Archive by Author

A New Way To View?

19 Apr

Hey everyone! I came across a new website the other day and thought I would share it. It’s a mix between blogging and pinterest. For those bloggers who like short & sweet posts with pretty pictures this may be for you! It’s called :

It looks so similar to the way you view pinterest with the blocked off sections and topics to choose from but these are all bloggers or magazines who blog! Although I haven’t used Sulia to write a post on I have used it for reading material and finding new blogs. It’s been interesting to flip through this in the morning and see what else new is going on. I tend to check the crafts tab which looks like this:

I’d flip through until I found something that caught my eye and then yLou can click the link or add them to your “trusted” sites to view. This is like wordpress’s reader. You trust or follow someone and get to see their new posts on your “feed”. I found this bib necklace interesting so I l clicked on the link to see the blogger!

Needless to say I got distracted for a little while! I don’t know if I”ll be checking in on a daily basis to see what’s happening over there since half of my reading time is following most of you on wordpress ;) but who knows – this could be future!

What do you think of Sulia?

Love Always,

Jennifer

 

Moving Tips!

17 Apr

Now that I have been packing the house for DAYS and listened to some seriously helpful tips on here I’ve decided to share my process of moving with you all in hopes that it helps someone else stay organized!

First things first – I made a list! I I planned out my weeks on which days I was going to pack what and in what order. I decided to pack items from least used to most used. So items in the storage, closet, and pushed back in cabinets that we weren’t touching were packed or given to the thrift store.

After going through the whole house and getting that out of the way I decided to pack room by room of all the things that we wont’ be using except for the next two weeks we are here. That means all of my clothes – minus two weeks. All my books except for the one I’m ready, all my desk things except the stuff I’ll be using for packing and last minute things.

Having an organized list and timeline has made this process so much easier! The best part is I’ve left myself two days off each week to do other things like errands or just plain relax after packing for days!

Next I got colored labels! This was my favorite idea. I bought rolls of colored labels and each color represents which area it goes in. Yellow for the kitchen, Orange for the craft room, Green for the storage and so on! Now I don’t have to waste time labeling boxes for which room it goes in and just quick write plates, paint, or xmas things! Saves me time and headaches. Another reason I decided to do this was because we are having a lot of extra hands help us move. I plan on printing out which color label goes where with little signs around the house so no one will have to ask where things go – they’ll follow the color like candy land! <3

Another useful tip I got from friends and family was to not spend money on boxes. Local ABC stores, grocery stores, and retail stores will gladly give you their boxes if you just call and ask to come pick them up! I’ve avoided spending any money buying boxes and the best part is 99% of them are very heavy duty boxes which is great for moving! (Don’t forget to purchase packing tape – that YOU WILL NEED!)

So far I’ve gotten half of the house packed up. One more weeks and we’ll be living in a house full of boxes – two more weeks and we’ll be moving!!

I think the hardest part I’ve noticed so far is getting it through to Emma that we are moving. She’s walked through the house during our inspection, seen pictures online a thousand times, she watches me pack things and asks if they are going to the new house and if we are going too – but I don’t think she’s quite gotten it yet. I’m wondering how she is going to take it!

Have you moved with young kids before? Any tips for me?

Pinteresting Sunny Finds

12 Apr

The warm weather is here and it’s my favorite time of year! <3 I’m a sunshine type of girl so as you can probably guess – I’m all about finding fun things to do in the sunshine. Check out my latest finds on Pinterest for those warm weather days :)

 

Over sized bags for keeping all the necessities in ;) Towel, water, book, sunscreen, sunglasses, wallet, snacks, you name it – I’ve got it in my bag!

A change up in recipes! No more weigh me down food and more light and fun food!

A warm weather reading list! I love basking in the sun with a good book!

Fun flirty dresses! Now I’m not stuck in layers of clothing anymore – I can breath!!

Yummy sangria! Nothing like a refreshing glass to keep you cool on a nice warm day :)

Exploring new places! Getting outside and having an adventure!

Flippy Floppies!!!!!!!!!!!! I love sandals and flip flops!

Frozen Treats – Especially the home made ones!

Warm weather arts & crafts! Not to mention all the DIY projects that we’ve been waiting to do ;)

and don’t forget the seriously awesome amount of sunglasses to choose from!

What are you favorite things about warm weather?

Love Always,

Jennifer

Pack Pack Pack it up!

10 Apr

This girl is packing up!

But don’t worry we’ll still be here posting ;) I just wanted to share the good news with you! We bought a house! We are moving at the end of this month so things you have to look forward to coming May – new home updates, new home projects, home decor projects, shopping trips, budgeting, and probably a ton of ridiculous photo’s of me trying to do more than I can handle ;)

Although you might be a little disappointed because all of this:

Will now be packed up in boxes – which makes doing DIY projects a little hard. So until then I’ll be  keeping you posted with things that I can do while I’m in the middle of boxes ;) I’ll be focusing on organizing, spring cleaning, and time management – because we all know I’ll need all of those things in order to get through this move! Haha!

And because I’m just so darn excited about it – check out the new place:

I am so excited I can hardly contain myself! Here are a few projects Brian and I have already decided on doing when we move in:

~ Painting painting painting!

~ Crown molding

~ Buying some new furniture!!

~ Setting up my new craft room & light room for pictures

~ Staining the cabinets (if Brian lets me)

~ Painting my desk

~ A little yard work

What are you excited about seeing?

I’m also excited about the thrift & consignment stores this place has! I’ll be taking pictures so you can check it out with me but I have a feeling just stepping foot in those stores is going to make my project list triple! Luckily this house is really move in ready. There isn’t much to fix but cosmetic things so what you’ll be seeing are finishing touches to make it our own but knowing how I am – I can easily find projects to do ;)

I think I’m especially going to go project crazy since all of my things are going to be in boxes for the next three weeks! Is it just me or is it impossible to not be crafty for that long!? I don’t know what I’m going to do but I have a feeling my pinterest board is going to fill up quickly!

 

Do you have any packing tips to share with me? I’d love to hear them!

Love Always,

Jennifer

Craft Hope! Project 21 – Are you in?

8 Apr

Hey everyone! I’m so excited to share with you today a small group of people who are making a HUGE difference in the world as well as the handmade community!

C was made by a wonderful woman named Jade. She had a dream of making the world a better place and decided to create this website to do just that. On Craft Hope’s website you’ll see projects which they do. They find a place, people, or charity in need and figure out what handmade item would best benefit it. For example when a tornado hit southeastern USA, they decided to collect handmade security blankets and send them to those who survived – 366 blankets were made! For the wildfire in Texas they collected sock monkeys for the children who lost their homes – over 600 sock monkey’s were collected and delivered.

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If there is one thing I love – it’s giving to someone in need and to give something handmade just makes me ten times happier. After starting my business online on Etsy and being welcomed into the handmade community with open arms and more help then I could ever ask for – I can see how this site has become the massive hit it’s been.

This week they posted They are collecting blankets, scarves, and hats of all kinds. Crocheted, knit, sewn in all shapes and sizes! This is a huge effort to keep the children in Romania warm throughout the winter and I couldn’t help but sharing this! Let’s all join together and make a difference in these children’s lives! You can click on the link above to see the details and where to send the blankets to. If you decide to join in the fun please comment below to let us know and feel free to share pictures of what you send to us by email at acharmingtwist(at)gmail(dot)com!

Are you in?

Love Always,

Jennifer

Goodbye Easter!

3 Apr

It’s detoxing time in our house. We are FINALLY packing up the Easter eggs and getting rid of all the candy in the house. There comes a time after every holiday where I can’t take the sugar rushes or the temporary holiday decor and it gladly disappears! Here are some cute Easter things I found that I might have a harder time letting go if they were at my place ;)

 

Are you ready to get rid of your Easter things or you are you hanging on to something you aren’t ready to let go of yet?

 

 

Love Always,

Jennifer

Taco Soup!

1 Apr

A nice way to spice up your soup life ;)

This is a meal I always have on hand CONSTANTLY. This has been a traditional in our family since my Freshman year of highschool. My parent’s friends made a recipe that was similar to this and of course we edited to our liking. I have only met two people in my life that have tried this and didn’t like it.

Ingredients:

One Pound of 

One can of 

Two cans of Petite Cut Diced Tomatoes

One can of 

One can of 

One packet of Ranch Salad Dressing 

Two packets of Taco Seasoning

Directions:

In a large pot pour in Rotel, Tomatoes, Chili Beans, and Corn with the juices and everything and cook on low heat stirring occasionally. In a medium-sized skillet, ground one pound of hamburger until cooked thoroughly and then strain. Add hamburger meat to the large pot and stir. Add the two packets of taco seasonings and one packet of ranch salad dressing seasoning. Stir until mixed completely and turn to medium heat for about 6-8 minutes.

AND VOILA! It’s done!

Extra Ingredients if you so choose:

We use Scoops to put the soup into and eat like a taco!!

Other things that are fun to add, shredded lettuce, cheese, sour cream, and anything else your little heart desires!

This is perfect for cold weather and so easy to make its ridiculous but I also eat it year round :) It is also awesome leftovers. If you are lazy like me a small-medium size bowl takes about two minutes in the microwave and it’s back to warm goodness!! Or if you are like my mother it takes a couple of minutes on the stove.

Enjoy!

Love Always,

Jennifer

Working Moms!

29 Mar

Hey everyone -

I’ve decided to write about a topic that is been on the news recently about working women, what choices they have to make, how much they have to sacrifice, and is it all worth it to “have it all”. My parents watch Rock Center where they had interviewed Erin Callan – Former CFO of Lehman Brothers about being the women on top and having it all and wishing she had done things differently. This seriously hits home to me because I quit my job to be a stay at home mom and my sister is a work oriented person. We couldn’t be polar opposites but this interview actually spoke out to both of us in a unique and different way! Take a look at it here:

(Sorry this video embed wouldn’t clip)

Basically what I’m getting from this interview is she’s saying it’s OKAY to be a work oriented mom as long as you are making the right choices for you a long the way and finding a good balance in your life. She’s also saying it’s OKAY to not be work oriented. It’s okay to stay home and do what you love the most. It was a nice change of pace from what we usually see with controversial debates about what is the right and wrong thing and I think it’s refreshing to hear someone say it’s okay to be either or both.

As I stated before – my sister loves her job, she loves the work she does and it makes her happy to be so work and goal oriented. Because of this, she has become an AMAZING sister to look up to. Seeing someone excel in something they love is like an eye opener that you really can do something you love and make a living out of it. Me on the other hand, I love to stay at home with my daughter. I don’t always love cooking, cleaning, or do laundry, but you bet your bottom dollar I’ll do it just so that I can teach my daughter what it means to be a good person, a friend, a female, and give her the attention I feel like I had growing up with a stay at home mom. But either option my sister or choose – is the right one for us and that’s what it should be!

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The other thing about me you might not know is I’m also a work from home mom! That’s right!! While I”m staying at home and doing chores – I’m working as well. I provide child care for two other children besides my own daughter as a source of income on the side. Sure it doesn’t make as much as I’d be making if I worked outside of the house but if you subtract gas money, child care, eating out, and time away from my family (and still coming home to chores) – I think my income exceeds what I’d be making out the home as well as the happiness it’s given me to do so.

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After seeing that interview, I saw a post on cafemom.com with a few mom’s talking about it. Check it ou (If you want to skip to the above part it’s at 9:40 but they also talk about a bunch of other things like blogging so I hope you’ll listen to the whole thing):

Wow! This was exciting for me to listen to – partially because I am a young 20′s mother so hearing that I have the posibility to “have it all” just not at one time makes me feel like I hit the jackpot in having my daughter so early. I KNEW there was a reason I wanted to have a family young, I just thought it was because I wanted to have enough energy, spend time with them, and then when they got older and left I’d still be young enough to travel and have fun with my husband ;) haha!! But this just makes me even more excited for my future.

I also love that they talk about working from home/blogging and how other people don’t see it as a job. I love blogging and I love sharing it with Leslie – but it is almost a FULL time job! As you other bloggers know it sucks up a lot of time in our lives – especially because not only do most bloggers love to blog, they love to read blogs as well. That takes time!!

So I’m excited to hear what you all have to say about these videos and how it applies to your life!

Love Always,

Jennifer

Pinteresting Home Decor Ideas!

27 Mar

Here are some fun finds I found on pinterest for your home!  I’m always on the look out for cute things I can easily do in my own home, most of these are pretty simple:

A little ribbon, scrap fabric, and fun scrapbooking extras and you can spice up any wall!

I love the idea of making light switches and outlets a little more fun!

Styrofoam balls, scrap fabric, and some glue! You can change up the colors for the season or theme you are going for!

Saving the best for last! An old window put to good use! not only is it pretty to look at but it’s extra storage!

What’s your favorite thing to do to change up a space in your home?

Love Always,

Jennifer

A little work of my own!

25 Mar

This year I decided to take an art class to get a little inspiration. For those of us who are creative, sometimes we need an outlet, a source of inspiration, or really just some dedicated time to do what you love. I went into this art class assuming I’d be doing my usual and was completely surprised at where my teacher took me.

I usually do drawings like these:

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All black & white with graphite. My teacher thought I’d be amazing at colored pencils and it would give my drawings a little something extra.

So I bought the colored pencils and found a picture I wanted to do next:

I don’t know what attracted me to this picture, I knew it was going to be hard but I was so excited about it!

Class one – outline drawing (sorry if it’s hard to see)  I did the basic outlines lightly.

Class two – added a little color

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Class three & four – started getting more detail done on the hair and worked on my blending with the pencils.

Class five – added deeper colors and got more confident at my color mixing and choices

Class six – added more layers and more detail.

This was my last class in this session but I have a feeling I’ll be continuing with this drawing. I love is so much and I’ve worked so hard on it – I can’t wait to finish it!

What do you do for inspiration? Have you ever thought about or tried taking classes to keep your creativity going? How did it work for you?

Love Always,

Jennifer


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