How to Host a North Pole Breakfast, From Setup to Cleanup

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #ScrubSeason #CollectiveBias

One of our favorite Christmas traditions has easily became our annual North Pole breakfast. After a recent look around Pinterest I noticed that there are a whole lot of ideas floating around, but I couldn’t find any help or tips. Today I want to share with you 5 tips and tricks that I’ve learned over the past few years and hopefully encourage you to start a new family tradition of your own.

Tips and tricks to help you host the perfect Northpole Breakfast from setup to cleanup and everything in between. #ad #ScrubSeason #CollectiveBias

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Lunch Made Easy & Free Printable Lunchbox Notes

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #GrahamSlam #WelchsPBJ #CollectiveBias

There are many common threads that unite moms. An endless love for our children, the ability to function off shockingly low amounts of sleep, and a dislike for packing lunches. I don’t think it matters if you home school, public school, or are planning a picnic adventure, packing lunches can be a lot of work. Over the years I have heard countless moms wish for an easier solution. Today I want to share how lunch time has been transformed in our home with simple tips, tricks, and ideas to help you find lunch freedom!

Does packing lunches get you down? Here are tips and tricks to find lunch freedom! Read More

DIY Mug Art & Starbucks® Caffè Latte K-Cup® pods

This post has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. This post was sponsored by Starbucks® as part of an Influencer Activation. I received compensation and complimentary products to facilitate my review. #StarbucksCaffeLatte #MyStarbucksatHome #CollectiveBias

Two of my biggest loves on this earth are Starbucks® Coffee Products and adorable coffee mugs to drink them from. Being able to do a post that features both of these feels like Christmas morning y’all.  Speaking of Christmas, this post is guaranteed to give you some great Christmas present ideas so make sure you pin it for future reference.

DIY mug art. This simple tutorial explains tips, tricks and give you 4 free templates to get started.
How many of you have been wanting to make your own mug art for what feels like forever? If you are anything like myself you have thought about it at least a dozen times, but have never followed through. Why? It looks too hard. Today I am happy to report that I tried, I conquered, and I lived to write this blog post. I am going to share with you how to make your own custom mugs, give you some tricks to get you started, and offer you four free design templates that I know you are going to love.

DIY mug art. This simple tutorial explains tips, tricks and give you 4 free templates to get started.

There are 6 steps to the process.
1) Take your template that you print out and trace over the back of it. To make the process easier I traced mine on a window. After you have the outer edges done fill it in. I mean REALLY fill it in so it is very dark.

2) Cut around the template and tape it perfectly to the cup. Make sure you place the side you traced on the back and the printed side facing out. I used lots of little pieces of tape to get mine well secured

3) Scribble. Take your pencil and go to town scribbling over the printed words. Use this to de-stress a bit if you need to, pressing as hard as you can and being very careful not to rip the paper.

4) Carefully remove the tape and the paper

5) Go over the marker with Oil based paint markers. Regular permanent markers WILL NOT do the trick.

6) Bake your creation at 350 degrees for 20 minutes, allow it to cool in the oven before removing.

There you have it, the secret is out. Your not free handing the art work, your tracing it. See, this project just became much more manageable in your eyes.

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This was my very first attempt. Not too bad, right?

Showing you how to #DIY your own mug are in today's blog post! Click To Tweet

Here are a few tips to hopefully make your attempt easier.

*Thinner words and designs are much easier than wider ones. The main reason being there is less to fill in and overlap. Try and work from the outside inward overlapping as little as possible.

*Mistakes can be removed with acetone nail polish remover but you will lose your pattern to trace and fixing mistakes can be a little tricky.

*Practice makes perfect. Consider practicing your design a few times before diving head first into a project. This gives you a chance to adapt to how the markers work.

DIY mug art. This simple tutorial explains tips, tricks and give you 4 free templates to get started.

If you are excited to give this a try but feeling creatively uninspired, you can grab your free copy of these templates.

starbucks-product

Now you clearly need something to put in your mug and I have the perfect thing for you, Starbucks® Caffè Latte K-Cup® pods. This new product is everything I need in a cup of coffee and more. They are made from milk with no artificial flavors and come in  3 Starbucks® signature flavors: Mocha, Caramel, and my favorite, Vanilla. You can also pick them up in two seasonal favorites too, Pumpkin Spice and Peppermint Mocha. I may never leave home again… unless I run out.

starbucks-caffe-lattestarbucks-latte-process

Starbucks® Caffè Latte K-Cup® pods are so easy to make in a simple two-step process. Pour the packet into your mug, Add your pod to your brewer, select the 8 oz setting, brew, stir and enjoy! Just knowing I am minutes away from a latte whenever I need keeps me going on days when I know I’ll need a little pick me up. Which is pretty much every day.

A perfect latte is only minutes away with Starbucks® Caffè Latte K-Cup® pods! #ad #StarbucksCaffeLatte #MyStarbucksatHome Click To Tweet

starbucks-latte-celebrate

So it’s time to celebrate friends. Starbucks® Caffè Latte K-Cup® pods are available at grocery stores nationwide!

Have you found them instore yet? 
Which flavor would you try first?

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2016 Starbucks® Corporation. All rights reserved. Keurig, Keurig HOT, K-Cup and the K logo are trademarks of Keurig Green Mountain, Inc., used with permission.

My Workspace, The Reveal

After turning our bonus room into a school room last summer it didn’t take me too long to realize I forgot one thing, a place for me. The space was perfect and functional in every way but I seriously underestimated the amount of time I would spend sitting in there. After one year of getting by I knew things needed to change. So I did what any girl would do, I turned to Pinterest. My goal was to find a cheap desk option that didn’t look too cheap. After I thought I had a good plan I drew some sketches and went to Russ. First he laughed at my sketches, clearly I am not a carpenter, then he built me a desk that was 10 times better than anything I had envisioned and he did it for less than $50!

After talking about my work space and dropping hints for a few weeks now, I am finally going to share my space with you today!

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There it is. It isn’t super big, fancy, and it doesn’t have an amazing view, but it is mine. I can’t even tell you how nice it is to finally have my very own corner of the home to play, teach, and work from. 

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The desk was made from a filing cabinet we already had, a sheet of wood, and some 2×2’s that Russ picked up. He built a pedestal for the filing cabinet, a frame for the top, legs, and added some support that also happens to look pretty too. 

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The wall decor came from Hobby Lobby. All of it was bought with coupons and/ or on clearanced really cheap.

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I wanted the mirror for one reason, to keep an eye on the girls. After finding the perfect place we hung it up and I can easily glance up to make sure they are working without having to turn around. Genius? I think so. 

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When you can’t find the lamp you want on the budget you have, you make one. I bought a simple lamp from Wal-Mart and used acrylic paint to turn it into what I was looking for.

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Add in some simple office supplies that I picked up from Wal-Mart and Target and tada, my space is all done.

Since my desk being finished about a month ago, not a single day has gone by that I haven’t use and loved this space. I have a feeling that won’t be changing any time soon. 

Where do you work?
Do you have a space to call your own?

Finally sharing my #workspace #reveal in today's blog post #TuesTalk #DIY Click To Tweet

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It’s your turn to link-up for this weeks Tuesday Talk!

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Mason Jar Soap Dispenser {DIY}

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #ScotchBriteSponges #CollectiveBias

Today I want to share with you a simple DIY project and the story of a messy sink transformed.

DIY-Mason-Jar-Soap-Dispenser
I spend a lot of time in my kitchen and it shows. I love the idea of having a photo ready kitchen to bake, prep meals, and cook for my family in but meal, after meal, after meal, things get messy.

REALLY messy.

Scotch-Brite- Sink-Before-after
Before
This was my sink…*insert blushing emoji face*. It wasn’t just like this for a day either. It sometimes looks like this for days on end. It’s a beautiful sink but so hard to keep clean, unless you have the right tools. For years I had been buying bargain brands and let’s just face the truth, they  weren’t doing the job the way it needed to be done. I didn’t want to scrub the sink for 30 minutes, so I just didn’t… unless company was coming over that is.

After
But this, this is how my sink has looked for over a week now. My five-year old daughter was so surprised. She was completely convinced that we got an entirely new sink *more blushing*. Today I am here to out myself, and offer some help to others who might be in a similar place. 

The number one kitchen cleaning tip that I have is to find sponges that can do the job well and for me that is the Scotch-Brite™ Brand. They have the right tools for every surface. Once I had the proper tools, doing the dirty work wasn’t so bad. 

To really tackle this job I needed a Scotch-Brite® Heavy Duty Scrub Sponge. These sponges clean tough messes 50% faster, work well in and outside of the home and stand up to the tough jobs. In the past it seems like my sponge was falling apart before the job was even done, not Scotch Brite® .

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I also found using the proper cleaner to get the job done was important too. For a white sink dishwasher liquid detergent works well. It helps to bleach the surface as you scrub removing coffee and food stains. I simply wet the sink with warm water, put some detergent in it, scrubbed for a minute, let it sit for about five minutes then came back to rinse and scrub again. A job that used to take me 30 minutes now took me less than 10.

Sharing how my messy sink was transformed with @scotchbrite and a DIY on the blog. #Ad #ScotchBriteSponges Click To Tweet

scotch-Brite-Products
On a recent shopping trip to Target I stocked up on Scotch Brite® products. 

  • Scotch-Brite® Heavy Duty Scrub Sponges for tough jobs, green is heavy duty great for: pots, pans, oven racks, grill racks, tools, tires, and sinks
  • Scotch-Brite® Non-Scratch Scrub Sponges for the delicate jobs, blue is non-scratch great for: non-stick cookware, counter tops, cook tops, tubs, shower tile, windows, and dishes
  • Scotch-Brite® Heavy Duty Soap Dispensing Dishwand (Green). This has been the key to keeping my sink clean. It’s heavy duty scrubbing surface has made it so much easier. After I wash the dishes, I wash the sink too.

Target-Sponge
Save now on Scotch-Brite® Scrub Sponges at Target with this Cartwheel offer!

Once the sink mess was under control, not only did I not mind doing the dishes as much, I also wanted to make the area look prettier too.

Mason-Jar-soap-dispenser-filled
Supplies needed:

  • 1 pint-sized mason jar.
  • 1 lid & ring
  • 1 soap pump dispenser ( I recycled mine from a dispenser we were no longer using)
  • 1 large bottle of dish-soap
  • Caulk or some sort of sealant
  • A drill

Directions:

  1. Locate the center of the jar lid and drill a hole to the appropriate size to fit your soap pump. 
  2. Insert the pump, and caulk around the underside to secure the pump to the lid allow to sit in empty jar until dry about 12 hours. 
  3. Fill with dish soap, sit the pump on, and tighten ring. 

Ball-Soap-Jar-DIYNeed more inspiration to help you tackle the big messes in your house? Take a look here

So now it’s your turn to fess up.
What’s the dirtiest part of your kitchen?

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How To Organize a Homework Command Center

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #CreateWithHP #CollectiveBias

As hard as this is for me to say, back to school season is here. The time to hang up the beach towels is getting closer and I find myself thinking more and more about the soon to arrive school year. There is so much to plan and prepare to ensure we are ready.

One of my priorities is our school room. As a homeschool mom I have had a lot of practice setting up desks. From kitchen table learning to permanent desks, we’ve done it all. Today I want to share how you can affordably put together a homework command center to keep you organized through the year.

1. Location, Location, Location

Location is everything. Find a spot that is close to the center of the home, but not overly distracting either. Somewhere near the kitchen is always convenient. If you don’t have an area where you can permanently set up a desk. The kitchen table has worked well for years and I have a special tip for you at the end of this post.

2. Things to Remember

A great way to remember things is to see them. An organized center will always have a calendar hanging to write down important dates and an area to hang up reminders and even accomplishments too. When things are in front of your face every day you are a lot more likely to remember them. But just in case, write them in your family planner or set a reminder on you cell phone. 

3. A paper for everything

Keeping a large variety of papers on hand and organized makes doing any project simple. From notebook paper, printer paper, card stock, construction, index cards and more. We keep a little bit of everything around.

4. Organized supplies

Have you ever tried to work on a project but you can’t find a single tool that you need to get the job done? It is frustrating, right? Homework isn’t and different. Have supplies organized and easy to find. The least thing you wan to do is waste 30 minutes of home work time looking for an eraser.

HP ContainersContainers like these can be purchased for about $1 a piece and are perfect for keeping essential organized.

5. Lighting Matters

Check the lighting in the area you have chosen. Make sure it is adequate at all times of the day. If not you can purchase a small desk lamp for around $5. to help brighten up the spot, reducing eye strain and headaches.

6. Have a great printer

Printers are an absolute must for a homework command center. Your best option is an affordable all-in-one you can count on. I recently picked up the all new HP Deskjet 3636 at Walmart and I am in printer love. I didn’t even know that was possible.

HP-Printer-Walmart
I can now print from my smart phone or tablet,  something I have never been able to do. I can’t believe I lived without this feature for this long. So often I find something while on my cell phone that I would like to be able to print right away, now I can.

HP CellWith the HP Deskjet 3636 mobile printing is made easy. You can connect your smart phone or tablet directly to your printer and easily print without accessing a network. I also downloaded the free HP All-in-One Printer Remote mobile app so I can manage printing tasks and scan on the go. 

HP Above

Another thing I love about this printer is that it comes with choices. What’s your color this back to school? This affordable AiO that comes in 3 cool colors – Vibrant Red, Dragonfly Blue, Sporty Purple. I knew my girls would love the purple and I have to admit, I am a huge fan of it too. It adds the perfect pop of color to our work space.

Not only does this printer come with an affordable price tag and all of the features I need, it gives me high-quality printing and up to twice as many pages with Original HP high-yield ink cartridges, helping to stretch the budget even further.

I can also access coloring pages, recipes, coupons and more with free HP Printables that are delivered on my schedule.

Let’s review
An organized space has…

An organized space has

*A great, well-lit, location with supplies that are organized and accessible.
*There is a board to display reminders, achievements, and a calendar to keep us on track
*And the space isn’t complete without an amazing AIO HP printer.

Sharing #howto affordably create a homework command center today. #ad #CreatWithHP #BackToSchool Click To Tweet

If space in an issue and you can’t set up something permanent here is an organization option you may want to try.

Homework-Center-Cart
This cart keeps everything I need ready to go, organized and portable. I can easily roll it from one room to the next or tuck it away when we don’t need it. 

Have you seen the New HP Deskjet 3636
What color would you choose?

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It’s your turn to link-up for this weeks Tuesday Talk!

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