Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Some Lately's....

What has everyone been up to lately? Here's what I have been up to! 

Reading: I just read a book for book club by Mitch Albom.  First Phone Call from Heaven. Not one of my favorites, but I had to finish it. 

Laughing: Nothing yet, been a quiet morning. But I did watch a clip of Impractical Jokers last night and those guys crack me up! love them! 

Listening to: I am loving Adele's Hello, so is the rest of the world.  I really love Gwen Stefani's new song.  Reminds me of the old No Doubt songs, where she wrote her feelings.  Its like your experiencing the divorce with her lol 

Wearing: Jeans and sweaters! Not for long tho, its back to 80 degrees come Saturday!  

Watching: Scorpion.  Loved last nights episode.  So sad, but I think finally, FINALLY waige are going to become a thing!  

Eating:I had a delicious egg white scramble with zucchini, tomatoes, onions and feta cheese for breakfast, and it was only 5 points on weight watchers! 

Craving: A starbucks coffee 

Getting ready for: Thanksgiving! I cant wait to decorate for Christmas! 

Working on: cleaning and organizing my home.  Getting thank you notes out for the wedding.  I lost my notebook that had everyones address, so I'm hoping I can find that and send them out. 

What is everyone up to lately? 


Tuesday, November 17, 2015

DIY Wedding Projects

I made a lot for this wedding, bought spray paint by the dozen it feels like.  I found a glittery gold spray paint which is so pretty.  I wanted to glitter everything! 

I first started with the jars for the center pieces for the tables. I collected different pieces from thrift stores and then Michael's craft store was having a sale on them, so I got a dozen different jars for $1 each.  

I bought a big thing of glitter from Walmart that cost me just under $6.  I still have some left, so I will be using that at Christmas time! 

I put a layer of modge podge over the glitter and let them dry and they were good to go! There may have been a sparkle here or there coming off but it wasn't bad.  I love them and plan on using them during Christmas time as well.  

Next, I made napkin rings and the cake topper.  For the napkin rings I had friends and family save their toilet paper rolls.  I cut them into rings about an inch big.  Then I spray painted them all gold.  They didn't come out shiny gold, more of a dull gold, but the front of the napkin ring I threw some glitter on and they looked so pretty up against the purple napkins! 

When Richie and I started dating and when I would write him letters or make him a scrapbook, I would take our A & R and put them together. It was our symbol.  Most couples have songs, we have our symbol.  I wanted that a part of the wedding and what better way then on our cake!  I used a foam poster board that was left over from my surprise bridal shower and drew it out.  Then cut it out with an exacto knife.  I covered it front and back with modge podge and then glittered that symbol up! I let that dry and then I put another layer of modge podge on it so the glitter stayed on.  Because it was foam I inserted tooth pics in the bottom and tooth pics secured it in the cake.  The cake people did not center it  on the cake, so when I was there checking everything I quickly fixed it.  

She how it is not centered?!  The crate I got at Michael's with a coupon under $8 and spray painted it gold with a glitter blast to it. The fabric was a scrap I found at Walmart for $1.50, I also intertwined a battery packed L.E.D sparkling lights that cost me $3 in the fabric to make it sparkle.  I even got the cake knife and server for half off Hobby Lobby so that only cost $15! 
So the cake table decor cost under $30.  

( I love this cake topper.  The picture does the sparkle no justice)

Cost for the napkin rings and cake topper was zero dollars. 

On to the gift card table!  For the guest sign in book, I didn't want a boring book, where people just write their names.  I wanted a photo book that we could look back on.  I purchased a groupon deal and got the photo book for under $25.  They had an option on there for guest wedding book, so all I did was upload photos of Richie and I and placed them where I wanted them.  For the sign to tell people to sign I found a big frame from a church garage sale that cost me $.75!  My friends dad did all the writing for me on all my signs and I threw some purple sparkly scrapbook paper to make it pretty. The pen I got at Walmart in their wedding section for $5! 


We didn't register any where.  The reason being is we have a lot of crap. We've been together for 10 years.  We have moved at least six times and two of those were across country.  We have purged, we have re bought, I am constantly shopping so we have everything we need.  What we didn't have was money for our honey moon so we wished for our guests to help us with our honeymoon fund.  Instead of buying a card box at the store, or a bird cage I decided to make one. I wanted it three tiered, but the smaller shoe box I had saved didn't fit well.  So I kept it at two boxes.  I cut a big hole in the bottom box (on top) as well as the top box (in the bottom of the box).  Then I cut a little slit in the top so people could put their cards in.  I covered the boxes with wrapping paper and then glued some flowers on that matched the decor.  Cost of box was $4.  

The finished product below (this is my photo, not the photographers)

On to my candelabras.  My friend texted me pictures of these candelabras she had found on facebook, only $5 each!  I had to have them! She had six, and I bought them all! Turns out the lady that was selling it, I work with her sister and brother in law.  Small world we live in.  They were an ivory color, but that had to go. Two were spray painted in orange, two in red and the last two in purple. They were scattered around the room with beads of pearls hanging from them that I had found a various thrift stores. 

I got the A & R in the $1.50 bins at Michael's so I spray painted them to match. 

This picture above was our memorial area.  Richie lost his dad when he was a kid and I lost my grandma and uncle a few years ago.  We wanted them there with us, and what better way then having an area all for them where they can watch over the entire wedding.  

This beauty was bought at Webster Flea Market for $10. I, of course spray painted it gold and then glitter blasted it and my mom had gold glittery candles we added.  It ended up on the counter with drinks but it was so pretty I couldn't not show you. I did buy battery operated flame less tapered candles for it but I forgot batteries.  So it was just there for show. 

Now for the signs, the table seating chart was put on a mirror.  I wanted a window that had eight panes, but do you know how much those suckers cost?  It was not in my budget.  This mirror though, was.  $2 at one of my favorite thrift stores.  I spray painted the frame gold and hit it up with the glitter spray.  My friends dad again wrote all the names. He did an awesome job.   

This was taken before it was put out side on a table.  All that was out there was the mirror and a milk glass vase with flowers.  Of course there was lace on the table out there as well.  You can see it in the background from this picture of my daughter. 

Doesn't she look beautiful? My little Greek goddess.  She had gold shoes for the wedding, but in this pic we weren't quite ready yet.  It was a mad dash to do last minute things but that's a post all in its self. Any who, see the mirror all the way in the back there.  Yeah, it looked pretty and you could read the names better at an angle then head on.  

I had a sign outside for the ceremony telling people where to sit, one for the candy table and then a Mr. and Mrs. on the dais.  

Mirror $2
Mr. and Mrs. $2
Ceremony $4
Candy table $1
Guest book $.75
Pen $4.75

Total cost $14.50.  Not too shabby. 

We had the ceremony outside and we because we live in Florida the weather is hit or miss.  Let me tell you, it was definitely a hit on our wedding day! It was BEAUTIFUL out.  It wasn't overly hot, there was a nice breeze, the sun was shinning and the blue skies were on display.  But, just in case it was super hot, I made programs that doubled as fans.  I bought the card stock at Walmart.  Cost was $5.  Then I purchased the tongue depressors in the craft section for under $5.  I added some pearls that I got on sale at Hobby Lobby for a couple dollars.  It was the most time consuming project.  I found a free template online and made our program.  Pinterest helped a little bit with the writing on the front and the thank you on the back.  The front was the basic processional, and then the back was our thank you. My friend helped make it look pretty and all I had to do was print it out.  I had to cut each one out by hand and fold, then glue.  Very time consuming, and in reality not a lot of people kept them.  So, I'm glad I didn't spend a fortune on them. 

Zoe totally didn't carry the wedding rings, she was miserable the beginning of the wedding and my friend who was our officiant had to drag her down the aisle.  

The picture below was after the ceremony.  All smiles.  The above, the misery. My sister looks miserable too. haha. 

Flowers, you can see in the above photos my sister and Zoe's little bouquets.  I bought the flowers whole sale.  Very cheap.  We picked them up two days prior to the wedding.  Thursday was pick up and we put them all in water (had to cut them as well).  Then Friday morning we or I assembled them in the jars and vases.  Candy made the bouquets and we kept them in water.  We did not have to refrigerate them. I found a solution on pinterest for fresh cut flowers.  It was luke warm water, bleach, sugar and lemon juice.  They held up very nicely. 

The spray roses were absolutely beautiful.  There were at least five buds per stem.  I spray painted the baby's breath to have some gold in the arrangements.  I loved it.  The colors were awesome together! 

Cost for flowers $178. 

My bouquet was made from brooches and I waited till the last minute to make it. Which I do not recommend.  It was a headache.  It didn't come out quite how I wanted it.  It was still pretty, small and I got to hold a piece of my grandma, so that's all that matters. I used a foam bouquet holder I got at Hobby Lobby.  Actually, used two of those.  I should have just kept them on the wire and done it that way. You live and you learn.  It still sparkled and was pretty.  Heavy, and in the end they stayed.  You need a thick gaged wire in case you ever want to make one. 

I covered the bottom part with purple fabric I had and secured it with jeweled pins. 

I added fabric flowers in my colors around it. I had orange too but it was too much.  

So, that's it! All the DIY for our wedding.  It was fun, didn't take me long and we had personal touches through out the entire wedding.  If you want to save money, DIY is the way to go.  


Next up is budget. 


Monday, November 16, 2015

DIY Wedding under $7000

So, I finally got hitched.  We were engaged for what seems like FOREVER.  We already had the marriage but I wanted the party.  We have never had a lot of money, we like most people live pay check to pay check.  So I knew I had to set a budget and stick to it.  Of course somethings don't work out that way, but with me making a lot of the things and buying a lot from thrift stores we were able to keep the cost down.  

The beginning of this year we decided we wanted to get married.  I had help from my mom and loved ones and I got started on planning. I had a busy semester at school so I didn't start contacting vendors until summer time.  So in all actuality, I had about 4 months to plan it.  I lucked out and a guy I worked with was getting married a few months before me and he gave me the number to his caterer and D.J.'s.  Who in turn gave us a discount.  

For the decor, I scoured pinterest.  Pinterest was my best friend.  I got so many ideas from there.  I know I wanted vintage with a lof of sparkle.  I know I wanted a tea length gown and bird cage veil.  I read on some budget blog about having silver platters with candles as table settings and it grew from there.  I knew because it was a fall wedding I would want fall colors.  Which are my favorites.  I picked purple and gold as the main colors with pops of dark red, dark orange and lime green as accents.  For the vintage theme I wanted lace on all the tables and I didn't want anything to match.  Everything was different. From there it just grew.  My mom, friend and I went to thrift store after thrift store in search of lace table cloths, silver platters (had to be tarnished, no shininess at my wedding) different sized jars, milk glass and vintage champagne glasses and flutes.  

Oriental trading was my second best friend. My mom wanted things with our names and date on them, so we ordered mint tins that matched, we had beverage napkins with our name and date.  For favors I decided on a candy table because my husband loves candy. I got the candy for just under $100 at oriental trading and on the site you can break it down to color which helped a lot.  I ordered lanterns for the dais decor and a bubbles for the exit.  

For my dress I was going to buy online, I searched and searched.  I found one I absolutely loved but I was a little hesitant because what if it didn't fit? What if it was not pretty?!?  I decided lets just go to David's Bridal and try on a few dresses to get a feel what tea length and floor length gowns and go from there.  Well, they had maybe two tea length gowns and we fell in love with one. It of course was out of my budget, but my mom said she would split with me so it was in my own budget. 

For the tux, we rented.  I was afraid that he would look frumpy because it wasn't tailored specifically for him but it was perfect.  He looked very handsome, and it included everything.  Much cheaper then buying a tux.  It was always a lot less stress then trying to go to all these different stores to piece together a suit for him at a good price.  

Flowers for the wedding, we found a whole sale florist and I did them myself.  I didn't want bunches and bunches, I wanted them sparse and just hanging out in jars.  Flowers cost us under $200. I made my bouquet from brooches from my grandmas collection and a few from my mom.  For my maid of honor and my daughter, we threw some flowers together and made them small.  I used baby's breath for outside ceremony and then for the baby's breath inside I spray painted it gold.  I only had one rose per table so I only bought one bunch (which was 25 stems).  I found a dark purple carnation, which is what cost me the most but they held up very nicely. 

The cake, I was toying with the idea of making one myself but in the end I didn't want the stress.  We used a local bakery and the cake was small.  Delicious and simple and I absolutely loved it.  That only cost us under $300.   

I will have more posts with breakdowns on DIY and cost.  



Monday, May 18, 2015

Greek Pasta

Who loves greek salad?  Me! I do!  I saw someone make it as a pasta, but I changed it up a bit.  

For one, I'm not a big fan of red onions, so I omitted them.  Two, I use actual greek dressing (you can find it on the dressings aisle in your local grocery).  Lastly, I add chicken to mine. 

Its nice and light, pair it with some bread for a quick dinner, or add it to your picnic basket for those family picnics during the summer.

Greek Pasta
12 oz- 16 oz. bowtie pasta.
1 bottle greek dressing (don't have ounces, sorry)
1-4 roma tomatoes diced (pull pulp and seeds out before dicing)
1 cucumber, peeled or not peeled you decide, seeds taken out
1/2 red onion (I don't do this)
1/4-1/2 c. kalamata olives (I like the saltiness so I throw a bunch in there, pitted and sliced in half)
small container of feta cheese
2-3 chicken breasts
salt, pepper, and garlic powder

Cook your pasta until al dente (don't forget to salt your pasta water).

Season both sides of your chicken breast with salt, pepper and garlic powder.  Heat oil in a medium sized skillet on medium heat and add your chicken breasts.  Cook on each side 5-6 minutes.  Remove and place on cutting board.

Drain pasta when done and add ingredients dressing through feta cheese.

Toss well. 

Cut chicken how ever you would like and top on pasta. 


Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Summer Time

Now that Zoe is in school, summers are special.  I change my schedule at work to stay home with her every day.  Last summer we spent a lot of time at the library, doing science experiments, reading books and going to story time.  We worked hard on our site words, reading and touched a little on time telling. 

This summer I plan to do more, not only do we have a wedding to plan, I want to hit up the beach more, cook and bake more with Zoe, so she can get better in the kitchen. Now all she makes are scrambled eggs and helps me stir, but I think shes old enough and smart enough to take on more responsibility.  

I want to focus on telling time this summer, science experiments at home, and learning about money.  Of course, I would like Zoe to find how wonderful it is to get lost in a story, I'm learning with Zoe I have to let her discover these things and slightly put my opinion in.  If I give her something I think will be great to read, she will poo poo the idea.  Thanks Lord, for giving me a stubborn child! haha. 

My other goals are to purge a lot of crap from this house.  Slowly but surely it will get done.  I don't go back to school until spring, so this summer I wont feel as though I have to get everything done right away. I'm taking my time, taking it easy and enjoying my family.

So expect new recipes and lots of cool science "experiments" we do at home.  

What are everyone's plans for the summer? 

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Happy New Year!

2015 is tomorrow!  Can you believe another year has gone by?  Honestly, I am glad to say good bye to 2014 and hello 2015.  It was a rough one financially, but I am hoping that 2015 is a prosperous one.  I should go out and by lotto tickets today.......

With any new year, you have lots of resolutions or goals for up coming year as I like to call them.  

So, its time to list my goals.  I am hoping I am successful at them this year.  I know my school load will be heavy but maybe just maybe I can get them done.   

1.) Purge a lot of crap in this house.  Lately I have just wanted to throw it all away, Im sick of looking at crap I haven't touched in forever.  So out it goes in 2015! 
2.) Pay off some debt.  Yeah, I say it every year, but I will make a conscience effort to do it this time.
3.) Cook more at home.  I hate leaving at night and having the hubs cook for the kid.  A co-worker of mine have decided to cook something new from a COOKBOOK (not pinterest) every week.  I already have my new item picked out for next week.  Ranch style chicken with twice baked potatoes.  Its from pioneer woman.  Sounds yummy! 
4.) Go to the gym 2-3 times a week. I was doing good this past year, but I got worn out with Zoe's birthday and school this last semester.  

I'm keeping it at four.  That way I am not too over whelmed.  

What are you resolutions or goals for 2015?


Sunday, October 5, 2014

Pumpkin Donuts

You will never guess how easy these donuts are just by looking at them!  All you need is a can of biscuits!

If you have biscuit cutters you could use that to cut the middle hole out.  If not use a knife or a small cookie cutter.  A star shape would be cute. haha. 

I used about 2 cups of oil.  Heated it up on medium. I did not test the temp tho.  Just threw a donut hole in and when it was bubbling I knew it was ready.  Just throw your donuts in and fry on each side for 2-3 minutes. 

After you take it out of the oil throw it in your pumpkin glaze mixture.  Flip it, coat it and stick it on a drying rack.

Once the glaze hardens a bit, ENJOY! 

Pumpkin Spice Donuts

1 can biscuits
2 cups vegetable oil 
4 cups powdered sugar
4 1/2 t. pumpkin pie spice ( I used less)
1 T. pumpkin 
3-4 T. half and half (I used more to thin out the glaze)

Mix up powdered sugar, pumpkin pie spice, pumpkin and half and half.  It was a thick glaze, so I did add more half and half to thin it out.  Just use your judgement.  I didnt use all the pumpkin pie spice, because well I didnt have enough! haha.  

After you are done frying up your biscuits throw it in this yummy glaze and let it sit for a few minutes.  

These donuts were so tasty!  Perfect on a nice cool morning.  

Dont forget your donut holes!  Fry those suckers up and throw in the glaze.


Original recipe can be found on pillsbury.

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