Happy 5th Birthday Mo and Bo! We cannot believe you are that old! It seems like we just brought you home from the hospital and had to stop 3 times to adjust your little heads because you were so small. Now, we are ready to ship you off to Kindergarten. Next, it will be driving lessons and college….
Okay, enough mushy stuff.
The kids’ party was a couple of weekends ago. The themes they chose were My Little Pony and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles… and yes, I pulled it off thanks to Oriental Trading! I don’t know about everyone else, but the kids, Don and I had a blast… even with the impromptu hula hooping contest. And, yes… I have pictures.
Yia-Yia, my beautiful niece, and my handsome 5 year old ready to party.
Don and his Grandma
Bo opening presents
Mo opening her doll.
The twins opening their new Wii U
Checking out the Wii U box
Don and Bo opening the Wii U
Singing Happy Birthday – and yes, we do it twice. Mo is always first because she was born first.
Aunt Danna hula hopping
Nana hula hooping
As you can see, we all had a blast. I am not sure what prompted the hula hooping… but, it was hilarious to watch. Part of the kids’ birthday was a surprise trip to Columbus for an overnight stay in a hotel and then going to Dave and Busters the next day to play and have lunch. We had to cancel. A couple of hours after the party, Bo and I came down with the flu. Then Mo got it. Then, the dryer broke. Not a fun time.
Happy Birthday Mo and Bo! Mommy and daddy love you tttttttttttttttttttttttttthhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiisssssssssssssssssssss much. (More than that!)
I have always ordered crafting supplies and kits from Oriental Trading, but never party decorations and supplies. This year, we decided to give it a try for the kids’ 5th birthday party. Now, if you are not the parents of twins, you won’t understand how hard decorating for a party is… you have to decorate for two separate themes, unless you miraculously are able to convince them to only choose one.
Well, this year, Mo decided on My Little Pony and Bo wanted Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Okay. Purple, pink, and green. We can do this.
I headed over to Oriental Trading’s website – they couldn’t make it any easier for you, unless they came and decorated! They have themes for everything it seems! We quickly found My Little Pony and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and were able to get our plates, napkins, and everything else. They also have streamers, signs, plates, napkins, tablecloths, basically anything you would need for a party of any type!
If you head over to their website, you can see the vast array of themes and supplies they have… from anniversaries, birthdays, baby showers, prom, carnivals, homecoming, luau, and more.
Now, I know you are wondering about the quality, right?
The plates and napkins and decorations were what I would consider high-quality and very reasonably priced. No one had to double up plates because they were flimsy… we served pizza and all kinds of snacky stuff and the plates were able to hold up to the heaviness of the food. To be honest, without bashing another store, they were better quality than the extra napkins we bought at the local big box super store!
I encourage you to check out Oriental Trading – not only for their craft supplies but their party supplies! Plus, check out their new online free party planner where you can send invites for free! They even have candy and small trinkets for the goodie bags.
Make sure you stop by tomorrow for more pictures of the twins’ party… complete with hula hooping!
In exchange for this post and review, I received party supplies and decorations. All opinions and statements are my own and were not influenced in any way by the compensation received. Please see my disclosure for more information.
Today’s recipe is the best of both worlds – comfort food and nachos. You cannot go wrong with this one! Plus, it is a cinch to make… you will wonder why you never thought of mixing these ingredients up before! It seriously is the next best thing to nachos! This is week #56 of Tasty Tuesday! Make sure you check out my featured recipes from last week and link up your own!
Meanwhile, brown hamburger and onions until meat is no longer pink.
Drain noodles and return to pot.
Combine meat mixture, tomatoes, cheese soup, 1 cup cheese and olives.
Pour into 9 x 13″ baking dish sprayed with cooking spray. Top with remaining cheese and crushed tortilla chips.
Bake at 350 degree for 10-15 minutes, or until cheese is hot and bubbly.
Prior to serving, drizzle with ranch salad dressing.
Welcome to Week #56 of the Tasty Tuesday Party! Remember, each link gets exposure on 10 great blogs and everybody gets pinned (that follows the rules!) You might even get featured on one – or more – of our blogs!
We’re looking for bloggers to permanently host Tasty Tuesdays with us & you’d be perfect! If you’re interested, please fill in this form,
Each week, our team of 10 amazing bloggers hosts this fabulous party!
We’re so glad that you’ve stopped by to party with us!
Come join in on the social media Weekday Mixer that I am now hosting with five other wonderful ladies! Link up your social media accounts and make some new friends! The party stays open all week! Let’s get the party started! The fifth Weekday Mixer was a great success! We had 84 blogs linked up and numerous social media link-ups! We hope that you all had the opportunity to mix and mingle and make some awesome new buddies!
Welcome to the 6th week of The Weekday Mixer Social Media Link-Up! As you know, it is a brand new social media link-up for all to join! This mixer is all about networking and making connections. Also, you can gain exposure and increase your social media following! Link up your social media accounts and mix it up with some of the other linkers.
Each week, the Weekday Mixer will start on Sunday nights at 8:00pm and go on until Friday night at 11:59pm. One linker will be chosen from each host and guest host each week and featured in the following week’s link-up! If chosen, you can provide a brief summary about yourself and your blog/website and all of your social media accounts will be listed. It’s a great way to stand out among the crowd!
Meet your fabulous hosts…
As you can tell, we have some new ladies joining us – Liz from Look by Liz Lewis, Kaitlyn from Three Sisters and Us, and Julia from Mini Van Dreams.
Welcome these awesome ladies to the mixer!
and your awesome guest hosts!
Interested in being a guest host of the Weekday Mixer?
Fill out this form and Natasha will be in touch with more information.
Now meet this week’s featured bloggers…
Melissa at Willamette Valley Wonder Woman
“My name is Melissa. I’m a 1985 edition that doesn’t like to slow down much. I am a wife, mother of 3, and work on call as a nurse. I love to create, whether it be crafts, food, drinks, or anything else I can think of. I love adventures, and I believe you can turn almost anything into one. I adore my coffee (with cream!), family fun, beauty, and learning about wine (my husband is a vineyard manager). My mind is always working. I love my friends like family. Confession: I am easily distracted, even without my three little helpers. I am obsessed with Italy. I hope to travel there for my 30th birthday. I hope you enjoy my little blog with my ramblings on living and loving life. I am enjoying life to its fullest.”
Connect with Melissa at Willamette Valley Wonder Woman!
“I am Priyam and thank you for stopping by. I started this blog sometime back to document things I love. My interests are varied, I love decorating, baking and crafting among other things. Crafting for me is like a stress-reliever. After the kids sleep at night, I love to spend my time crafting and that’s when most of my work gets done anyways…:) I will try to document whatever projects I am working on and provide tutorials when ever possible. Hope you like some projects you see here. If you do please leave a comment. I would love to hear from you. You could also follow me, so that you can be updated whenever there is anything new here.”
“I’m Kristy. I’m always a Mom. I love to bake. I cook because I love to eat. Some people may say I am ‘crafty’. I love Celebrity Gossip, sometimes I wonder why I care that Liam & Miley broke up? I enjoy watching television shows, movies, and reading comic books. My family and friends make my heart soar. I love Pinterest and taking pictures. Art has always been a passion of mine, my dream was always to attend art school. Writing is just a part of my passion for art, so this is where I blog about my life. I love to write, but I wouldn’t call myself a writer.”
”My birth name is Julie but I mostly go by Mom, Mama or Mommy these days. I’m a wife and mother of two to my beautiful little girls. Autumn* turned 3 in October and Amelia* turned 1 in September. I’m also a nurse, working full time in a clinic. I know there’s more to me than that but those 3 titles certainly take up the most time! I’ve learned that there’s a lot of surprising aspects of motherhood — from the absolutely amazing to the very challenging and everything in between. And I’ve also learned that with all the newness and uncertainty I have an abundance of questions. *Names changed.”
“I’ve been blogging for a little over a year now. I realize that people are looking at this page to get a picture of who I am, so I want to keep it current. I don’t consider myself new to blogging anymore, but I definitely haven’t had the time to devote to my blogging like I’ve wanted to. There are still a lot of things I have to learn about blogging, but that’s what makes it exciting! The original intent of my blog was to chronicle my hair journey. I’ve also taken to blogging about myself and some of the things I get into in my every day life. My blog is like a diary. I like to explore myself here and share that with you. My life is changing daily and I’ll use my blog to talk about it! So stay tuned!! I’m about to take you all on a joy ride!”
A Broken Kind of Beautiful is one of those books you just can’t put down. Kate Ganshertknocks it out of the park – or off the runway -with her latest book. I fell in love with Kate’s books from the beginning, and honestly, I was rather skeptical when I began reading this one. It seemed outside her normal subject matter. But, I was so very wrong.
When Ivy Clark returns home for her father’s funeral, she is brutally aware that she is aging fast at the ripe old age of 25. Normally, this would not be a problem, but in the fashion model industry it is considered retirement age. While at the funeral, she runs into an old acquaintance, Davis Knight, who has some secrets of his own. The entire book is amazing in itself – you are totally submersed into life in a small town… you imagine yourself tagging along with Davis, Ivy, and Davis’ sister. You laugh. You cry. You want Ivy to realize looks aren’t everything, even though the fashion world disagrees.
Trust me… pick up A Broken Kind of Beautiful when it comes out April 15th. It will restore your faith in God, faith in relationships, and the faith in happy ever afters.
If you haven’t already checked out Kate’s other books… make sure you do! They have become some of my favorites that I reread over and over!
It’s been awhile since I shared a card… so, I pulled out this Blue Jean Card that I made for the fair last year. Now, don’t be afraid… it isn’t as hard as it looks! Trust me. Plus, even if you make a mistake, you can make it look like its part of the jeans and no one will know! This one takes a few special items – most of which you probably already have in your stash or around the house.
What I love about this card, is that you can easily change it up to be a birthday card or some other type of card, by changing the sentiment on the ticket in the pocket. Make this one your own with your ticket and belt… its up to you!
8 x 11″ blue card stock, with white core
Top note or other shaped die cut – you can also free hand this with scissors
Die cut machine, if using die cut
4.25″ length of ribbon, 1″ wide
Ticket or scrap piece of scrapbook paper
Optional: Embossing glue, embossing glitter, swirl or decorative stamp, and embossing heat gun
Cut the blue card stock to 8.5″ x 4.25″. Fold in half and crease well.
Place the card face up on your work surface. Take the sand paper and distress the front of the card, paying special attention to the edges.
Using your die cut machine, cut out the top note shape or other similar shape.
With the paper cutter, slice off approximately 1″ from the narrow end of the shape.
With the piece you cut off in step 4 above, cut a 1/2″ strip with the paper cutter.
Adhere the strip from step 5 to the top of the pocket as shown in the picture.
Using sand paper, distress the pocket as desired.
If desired, emboss your swirl shape using glitter.
Using pop dots, adhere the pocket to the lower part of the card as shown.
Adhere the ribbon to the top of the card, above the pocket, approximately 1/2″ from the top edge of the card.
Using your leftover blue card stock, cut 3-4 belt loops. (Mine are 1.5″ x 1/2″)
Carefully distress belt loops with sandpaper.
Adhere the belt loops over the ribbon as shown.
Write sentiment on ticket, apply adhesive to the back and tuck it into the card pocket. Push down firmly to ensure it adheres.
Decorate your pocket with gemstones.
There you have it! This could easily be made into a masculine card with a different colored belt and without the motif on the pocket. Or, what about a Christmas card using red paper and a white belt?!
I have skin problems. When I was given the chance to review the Adovia Dead Sea Mud Mask, I was a little skeptical. The mask is made in Israel with genuine Dead Sea minerals and the company says that these minerals will help with psoriasis and eczema. I have both. I am lucky enough that my skin problems are not so bad that I cannot cover them up easily with makeup, but when I am not wearing makeup, you can see the redness in my skin on my face.
Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.
I wish I could explain to you exactly how bad my skin is. I cannot use certain soaps and detergents. Occasionally I break out in a rash or hives for no particular reason. My eczema and psoriasis flares up periodically and during certain times of the year. I was excited about finding a product that might help with this – without having to use anything unnatural.
When I was asked to review Adovia’s Mud Mask, I kept putting it off and looking at it sitting on the counter. I figured it would be like other items I have tried. Worthless.
Boy, was I wrong.
I put a thin layer of the mask on my face, as instructed. It feels a tad bit gritty as you are smoothing it on. As you wear it, it has a slight cooling sensation – nothing drastic. It also doesn’t get super-stiff and hard as it dries. When I washed it off, I was truly amazed.
The redness my face usually has was almost completely gone. My skin was smooth and clean. I even noticed most of the blackheads from my nose (sorry, TMI) were gone as well. Don’t get me wrong… you definitely need to try this for yourself and see how it works for you and your skin problems. But, I am now a Adovia skincare convert. In fact, as soon as I washed it off and saw my skin, I immediately checked out their website for other facial products. They even carry makeup and hair products – both of which I am excited to try!
Definitely, check out the Adovia Mineral Skin Care line! You can purchase the skin care line from their website or from Amazon.com.
I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.
Happy Wednesday! Of course, it is time for Wednesday Hodgepodge. So, read on for my Hodgepodge answers for this week. Today, I am getting the opportunity to do something really cool that I will be able to share with you later this month! I am interviewing Dr. Catizone, the executive director of the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy Foundation, about prescription drug abuse by children and teens. I will be sharing the interview later this month! Cool, right?
For now though, let’s get to some Hodgepodge fun!
1. Since these questions are posting on the first day of April it seems only right to ask-when was the last time you did something foolish? If you can’t answer that one, try this one-when was the last time someone fooled you?
If you ask my kids, I am always doing something foolish. I always told myself if I had kids, that I wanted them to remember me as the fun and crazy mom. You know, when I am dead and gone, they will remember the crazy stuff I did and laugh. So, I am constantly doing off the wall stuff to make them laugh.
2. What’s the last biography or non-fiction book you’ve read? Was it any good?
I would have to say The Skagit Tulip Festival. I love tulips in the Spring.
5. How do you choose which blogs to read? What is something that will make you stop and read every time? Something that makes you say, ‘eh, think I’ll skip this one and move on to the next’?
I have my blog-friends that I read regularly, but usually when I find new blogs to read, they have to be pleasing to the eye, not too crowded with buttons and ads and other stuff, I hate pop ups – so, if the Facebook or newsletter subscribe pops up, I immediately find some other blog to read.
6. April is National Mathematics Education Month so tell us, when did you last use math?
About 5 minutes ago. I’m an accountant and its month end.
7. In honor of the A-Z challenge kicking off on April 1…choose one word beginning with the letter A to describe your yesterday.
Antagonstic. How’s that for a word?
8. Insert your own random thought here.
Random thought. Random thought. So, I ordered this new purse from Emilie M handbags. I got it, and literally had to cut off strings where the stitching was coming unsewn. After a week or so, the rubber sealing on the straps was coming off in chunks. I contacted them and they gave me an RMA number and a shipping label. I shipped the purse back to them at the beginning of March. I have yet to receive my refund. I have called them several times. No one answers. I have emailed them several times. No one responds. I have contacted them on Twitter like they suggest. No one answers. I contacted the Better Business Bureau where they are located and THEY couldn’t even get a response and closed the case. So, if you are in the market for a new purse or wallet, even though Emilie M is considered the “in” thing right now, Buyer Beware. I have since contacted my bank about this and will receive my disputed charges back in a few days. This is absolutely unbelievable that a company would treat a customer like this.
Creamy pepperoni pasta is a fun twist on traditional pasta with red sauce. The white, creamy sauce has amazing flavor with garlic, cherry tomatoes, mushrooms, green peppers, and pepperoni. Sophisticated enough for mom and dad, but gooey and yummy enough for the kids. Even better, you can make this as healthy as you want with low fat or fat free milk and cheese and turkey pepperoni! And trust me, it is better the next day as leftovers!
Meanwhile saute onions, peppers, garlic, and mushrooms in olive oil. When tender-crisp, stir in pepperoni and mix well.
Drain pasta. To empty pot, add soup, milk, vegetable and pepperoni mixture. Stir well.
Add pasta to pot and stir.
Add cheese and stir until combined.
Slowly add chicken broth until desired consistency is achieved.
Season with salt and pepper and allow to simmer until heated through.
Prior to serving, gently fold in cherry tomatoes.
Top with Parmesan cheese, if desired.
Welcome to Week #55 of the Tasty Tuesday Party! Remember, each link gets exposure on 10 great blogs and everybody gets pinned (that follows the rules!) You might even get featured on one – or more – of our blogs!
Each week, our team of 10 amazing bloggers hosts this fabulous party!
We’re so glad that you’ve stopped by to party with us!
Things I Would Do Over As A Parent | Monday Listicles
Thing’s I would do over as a parent? Where do I begin? That’s this week’s Monday Listicles topic… nothing like hitting you with a doozy early in the morning. Because, heaven knows I don’t write this until the last minute. Don’t you ever wish you could just hit the “redo” button and start again? Wait, am I the only one? Please tell me I’m not!
10 Things I Would Do Over As A Parent
Let my kids cry it out more.
Take them to the dentist sooner.
Not complain so much when I was fired and had to spend all day with them.
Make sure Bo was strapped into his car seat when we headed to the basement for the tornado sirens.
Take more videos.
Not let them sleep in our bed.
Institute “quiet time” even after they stopped taking naps.