Sunday, July 29, 2012

All Day Domestics...

Well, I guess I should say all day being domestic. Quite the domestic feat happened today. Laundry soap was made, dish detergent was made, AND I made Lil' Man a pair of pajama pants.
The best part about this day, all my accomplishments set aside, was getting to do this with my mom and my sister. We had a blast. I'm sure my poor mom is heading back home right now with a slight headache caused from my sister and I. :)
Mom helped Megan sew some curtains for her classroom. She also helped my sister and I sew pajama pants for our little guys and, might I add, they are matching pajamas. Yeah, very cute.

After our sewing, we gathered all of our ingredients to make our dish and laundry detergent. Meg and I both now have two containers of good homemade detergents. Dishwasher detergent on the left (white) and laundry soap on the right (pink).
Recipe for dishwasher detergent:
Dishwasher detergent

In between our projects for today, we all (my dad, mom, sister, nephew, brother-in-law, husband, son and I) went and ate at 5 Guys Burgers...mmm. Except that the jalapeƱos were a tad too spicy for me. I had to ditch
I am so glad my dad and mom decided to come up and visit. It was fun to see them and I am thrilled with what we accomplished today. Of course, Lil Man and M loved spending time with their Papi and Abuelita (tita, as Lil Man says).
Now, I am settled in watching some gymnastics and swimming going on at the Olympics. GREAT weekend.
- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Friday, July 27, 2012

Let The Games Begin

Oh, the Olympics. I love to watch the Olympic games. I love everything about them. I love the competition, I love to cheer for my country, I love the memories of watching them as a little girl, I love seeing the passion of the competitors, I love hearing some of their life stories...I am thrilled that I am getting to watch them, right now, with my little boy. (can I say "Mr. Bean" and "Chariots of Fire" was one of my favorite parts of the opening ceremony)

My favorite part of the opening ceremony is watching all the competitors come in with their country's flag (Parade of Nations). It always gives me goosebumps. How awesome to get to represent your country in such a manner.

The summer Olympics are, by far, my favorite. Don't get me wrong, I love to watch the figure skating, skiing, and what not. BUT....the summer Olympics are where it is at for me. Among my favorites to watch - swimming, track & field, and gymnastics.

Growing up, my sister and I used to look forward, every four years, to these Olympics. We used to pretend we were one of the American gymnasts or a gold medal wielding swimmer. We also would pick out the men we would cheer for. Naturally, the men on team USA were our first choice for the gold medal, but we thought it wouldn't hurt to cheer for who we wanted as our silver medal finalist. These men, of course, would be good-looking and muscular. We also would pick out our future husbands while watching the Olympics. For this, we usually picked from the gymnastics group of men...however, we did venture into the men's swimming group a time or two.

There is one guy who stole my 13 year old heart, back in 1996. Is it odd (creepy) that I still remember him?

Alexei Nemov. Yes, he was Russian.

But, look at him!!!!

Every time the summer Olympics were over, I would pick what sport I would compete in. I always chose swimming. I would go and practice my swimming in the pool everyday. Whether it be the butterfly stroke, the backstroke, or synchronized swimming, I practiced every day....for about a week or two.
So, now that you know what an Olympic nerd (or just nerd) I am....I hope you enjoy these 2012 summer Olympics as much as I will.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

On The Hunt

Yay! L was off today. We got up this morning and started working outside. Our yard was in MAJOR need of maintenance. Let me tell you. L changed the blade on the lawn mower (no, dad, it wasn't my fault this time) and I set off on mowing the yard. All I know, with almost 2 acres...thank goodness for my John Deere riding mower!
L pushed mowed the tight areas. Lil' Man helped. Yet another great thing about being on the riding mower...I can push the brake and stop to take a pic if I am so inclined. I'm sure that you can see Lil' Man got stuck mowing the grassiest area of all.

After I finished mowing, I went inside to make a grass/weed killing concoction I found on Pinterest. Going inside was nice. The relief from the oncoming heat was welcome. I saw myself in the mirror...yuck. I looked like I had been air brushed...but with red dirt. Anyway...the concoction. You can find it here -
Natural Grass/Weed Killer

After more outside work...we decided it was time to go inside and get cleaned up. We needed to go to town and get some measurements for a loft bed Lance is going to build. Don't worry, I'll keep you posted on that!

We then "treated" ourselves to one of our FAVORITE Chinese restaurants. Tai Pei. Now I say "treated" in quotations because going there will definitely not break the bank. It is a little hole in the wall that most people may be appalled by, but not us. We love it. Where else can we get two platters, two egg rolls, two cups of egg drop soup, 3 drinks, and an order of crab rangoon for only $16.50? Seriously, where can you get that?

We spent the rest of the day hitting up thrift stores, Goodwills, Salvation Armies, and what have you. I am on the hunt for a sewing table/desk. We are going to try and make a cute little sewing space in our living room. We will see. We had no luck finding anything today. Well, I will retract that. The first place we went had THE PERFECT DESK. We were both very disheartened to find the "sold" sticker on it upon further inspection.

After a long day of searching with nothing to show for it...we hit up Sonic. We all tried one of their new "island slushies"...have to admit, they were pretty good. We all enjoyed the fresh coolness of the islands in our drink. Well, we all did until Lil' Man poked a hole in his cup and all that "island goodness" was dripping all over my van. He was mad. I was having an anxiety attack. Lance continued driving.

Naturally, we had to pull over and clean what we could. I had, at one point, rolled down my window to let the drink spill outside. Great idea! Only, now the side of my van was sticky and messy. On to the car wash we went.
Someone is not a fan of car washes. In fact, here is a reaction from the automatic car wash entrance...we were just paying at this point. Not even near the actual "car wash zone"....but he knew what was coming.

Yes, I had to hold his hand.

If l let go of his hand....

So, I held his hand.

In case you forgot...
Without holding his hand...

Holding his hand...

It kind of reminded me of the scene in the movie Pure Luck (with Martin Short and Danny Glover) where they are at the jungle hospital and they keep showing the poor patient the picture of the girl. If you haven't seen the movie...go rent it. You won't be sorry you did. So FUNNY.

Well, I have an early day ahead of me tomorrow. I have to get myself out of bed, ready, and out the door by 7:00 a.m. :/ Y'all know...I am NOT a morning person!
- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

What's Going On...

Well, my summer life has slowly shifted back to normal again. I have spent the last couple of days accomplishing some things, yet remembering to also take it easy...since summer is almost over.
Some of the things I have accomplished:
* I stocked up on shampoo and conditioner for the next year/year and a half. Beauty Brands is having their annual liter sale...Woo-Hoo! Thanks, Amber for introducing me to this awesome sale. Since we both had the same strategy of picking out shampoos and conditioners...I bet we bought some of the same ones.

Did we?

* I also was able to go to my old classroom and my new-but-now-won't-be-using classroom and packed up some of my stuff. It was so sad to be taking my stuff out of Western Oaks Elementary (WOE). This is a school where I started out as a student teacher and moved onto being a 1st grade teacher for 7 years. It will always be home. The people that work there will never be just "coworkers"; they will always be considered as great WOE family. I will have to address more about this in a later post. I'm getting teary-eyed and it is hard to see my screen.
* I attended my sewing class last night. My pajama pants are starting to actually look like pants. I have to say, I am impressed. I am going to miss my weekly sewing class...only two more sessions left.
* Today, I started back on my digital scrapbooking. I successfully made it through April and May...of 2011. (Here is where I probably shouldn't mention that I only have a month done of 2010...Lil Man's first year of life.)
Yeah...I'm a wee behind
* I made a pretty good dinner tonight. Tequila Lime Chicken, tostadas, and a banana, chocolate chip, chocolate cake.
* Ohh yeah...did more research/ refreshed my memory on CCSS ( Common Core State Standards) as I prepare for a training on Thursday morning.
Some of the things I did to relax:
* Read a little of my book
* Watched a little Law and Order SVU.
Is it embarrassing to admit I looked up information on getting a criminal justice degree and requirements for being a detective? Is it even more humiliating to admit that I have done this every summer for the past 3 years when I watch my SVU marathons on USA?
* Perused through Facebook for awhile
* Did a little FaceTime with my mom. Actually, Lil' Man FaceTimed her...I heard her voice and looked over to see Lil' Man talking to her. How he knows to do that...I really couldn't tell you.
* Spent some time hanging out/gossiping with my sister (This is where I know my mom is shaking her head at us. I will get a phone call/lecture tomorrow).
* Enjoyed playing with my little nephew...loved seeing him being able to start crawling!
* Played with Lil' Man. We built some pretty cool things with his Mega Blocks...I decided I need to get him some Lincoln Logs, possibly for Christmas. I also CANNOT wait for him to play with Legos. Those were my favorite to play with growing up.
All in all...a pretty good couple of days. My one complaint...this HEAT. So, until the next post. (which be expecting one about the Olympics...soooo excited)
-Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

A Stitch In Time

July and stormy. Yes, it is July 10th and it is COOL in Oklahoma. A strong storm moved in and it dropped the temperature GREATLY. I love a good summer storm. The sound of the thunder and rain are so relaxing. When the weather is like this, my favorite thing to do is snuggle up with a good book. I am currently reading a pretty good little murder mystery - Dying to Kill.  I was about to continue to my next chapter, but then I decided to finish up a little project I started yesterday. This fun little project would be making a pillow for my sweet little 2 year old. Yes, it is a sewing project. Now that you have recovered from  the shock of hearing the words "sewing project" coming from me, sit back and I will tell you how that came to be.

Sewing, the only thing I knew how to do with sewing was thread a needle by hand and hand-stitch up a loose strap in a dress or fix a loose button (I did not do either of these well). So, you can imagine my trepidation about enrolling in a sewing class. My friend, Angela, called me and wanted to know if I was interested in doing this sewing class with her...despite my better judgement, I did it. I enrolled in a sewing class.

First day of class: We did a lot of listening...a LOT. I quickly began drawing parallels from my experience sitting there in my sewing class to a school classroom setting where I was the teacher. I think it is important for all teachers to experience this. I sat and listened to her talk about a "bobbin" for 10 minutes. I tried to listen and understand what was being major problem, I had NO IDEA what a bobbin was. I was lost and so not engaged.

Now listen to this...she stopped talking and showed me what a "bobbin" was and then I was handling it and working with it. I finally started to learn something. My tier 3 word quickly became her tier 1 word. I was able to understand what she was saying about making it look like a "p" to place it in the sewing machine. Why was it all making sense? Why was I learning? I was playing a part in my learning AND she was facilitating my learning experience. I was delighted that I actually learned something. From there...I made great strides in my sewing learning experience. (Okay...I am done with my spiel) :)

**I do have to mention...on my first day I DID get to sew something...finally...albeit it was just following a line on a piece of paper, I still felt accomplished.**

NOW...let me show you what I have been able to accomplish after 4 classes.

First Project: Cosmetic Bag


           Bottom of bag. Note the corners...COOL, huh?!?
Please notice...A ZIPPER! Yes, I did that too!

Second Project: A Tote Bag

Yes...I even lined it.

You can barely tell, but there is a front pocket.

Third Project: Pajama Pants

Pics soon to come...learning how to cut out the pattern this week.

My Solo Projects
I have absolutely enjoyed sewing. I am sooo glad Angela asked me to do this class with her. I have enjoyed sewing so much and am feeling (slightly) I decided to attempt some projects on my own..outside of class. I was a bit nervous at first...mainly, because in class if I have a question or a problem I quickly have one of my instructors there to run to my aid.

First Solo Project:

I started out at Wal-Mart (material was on sale) and then moved on to Hobby Lobby (love the weekly 40% off coupon).

My materials included:

* 3 yards of 100% cotton fabric
* Pinking shears
* Matching thread (all-purpose)
* Poly-fill stuffing
* Fabric Paint
* Sponge
* Stencil
* 2 yards of Fusible interface (heavyweight)
* Magnet sewing guide

What I did (this is just so you can see how my projects came to be, not sure if it is the "correct" way, but it got me there):

* Cut out (8) 18x18 squares from the fabric with pinking shears 
* Matched "right (front) sides" together 
* Pinned the edges of the material together
* Began sewing ( I sewed 1/2 inch seams all the way around)
* I left 3-4 inches of space unstitched (on one side only)
* I ironed one side of the material with interface (I cut 4 16x16 pieces of interface. I only put interface on one side of my material.)
* I reached in that 3-4 inch hole I left and pulled the fabric right side out
* My hubby placed the stencil in the center of the material (with interface backing) and sponge-painted the stencil onto the material
* After it dried...I stuffed the poly-fill into the 3-4 inch hole.
* I then hand-stitched the 3-4 inch opening. (pin the area closed and the hand-stitch it)
* And then....I had my own decorative pillows for my couch!

Second Solo Project:

I basically did the same thing as above, except that I cut out two 25x19 pieces of fabric instead of 18x18.
This time I left out the interface and stenciling. 

Front of pillow 
Back of pillow

I think he likes it!

Excuse the bed head :)

I know my projects aren't perfect...but for a first-timer...I am WAY excited about how they turned out. I am loving the "sewing experience"!

Sunday, July 1, 2012

The Perfect Cookie

On the hunt for the "perfect" cookie, my sister stumbled upon this FANTASTIC recipe that, I believe, does indeed make the "perfect" cookie. Ever since she shared this website with me, I have made countless batches. (countless mainly because I became a little embarrassed of how often I was baking up these batches of cookies, so I stopped counting)
These cookies were an instant hit in the Williams' household. My personal reasoning for LOVING them - they are the perfect density. I hate cookies that are too dense or so light I feel like I am eating air. Also, I can literally taste the perfect blend of the ingredients. I usually overcompensate my cookies with chocolate chips...with this batch, I do not have to do that.
I highly recommend visiting and making these cookies!

Today, Lil' Man and I had some fun baking cookies. I love baking/cooking with him. It is so fun and I hope he will look back on these memories like I do of when I was little and working in the kitchen with my great grandma. Our conversations today were a little sporadic...from me explaining what I was doing and showing him the various ingredients to him asking why he had to use a big boy potty and how much he liked fireworks. I loved it. The teacher in me also was very happy, he counted out groups of 3 with the chocolate chips, identified and pushed the numbers on the microwave that I needed him to when I was melting the butter and we described how the cookie dough tasted...he came up with "yummy" and "good". :) 

The Progression of "The Perfect Cookie"...

Mixing the ingredients (while listening to Pandora)
We LOVE chocolate
Time to add the chocolate chips
He is such a good helper
Everyone deserves a little taste...
Admiring his masterpiece

Enjoying "The Perfect Cookie"


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