Saturday, July 30, 2011

A Little Something Strange

Do you ever have your pet stare at something off in the distance for a long time? When you turn around and look you don't see anything there? My cats do that on occasion, often when I am alone in the dark. I'll turn the light on, thinking there is a bug (which is scary enough for me) and when I look..... nothing. Nothing, at least that I can see. I think I've watched one too many shows about hauntings!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

My Garden the beginning (in pictures)




Mysterious clearance flowers that were dead and came back 

Friday, July 8, 2011

Justine Going Green: Making detergent

At the beginning of the year, I wrote out a list of my resolutions. Throughout the year, I have slowly been attempting to tackle them. One of my resolutions was to live more frugally. I have started to use coupons. Definitely not to the level of TLC's Extreme Couponing, but I am trying to drastically reduce our grocery bills.

One of the more expensive things that you can buy without using coupons is laundry detergent. Once I started using coupons I was able to get it significantly cheaper, but I was still thinking about the chemicals that go into the detergents, especially with a little guy who has sensitive skin. I started looking for a effective way to wash laundry minus the chemicals. I came across this post, from my friend, Andrea over at Jada Roo Can Do. (Awesome blog, by the way, you should totally visit her)! I had read a couple of things about making your own detergent, but when I got a testimony to it being just as effective, I was sold. It was just a matter of going out and getting my supplies.

You can view the recipe I used here, at the Duggar's website. The supplies consist of borax, super washing soda, and Fels-Naptha soap. The hardest part of this whole process was grating the soap. Once it was done, it looked like this:
I had a hard time convincing Logan that it was not cheese. He kept asking, "Can I have some?" He seemed quite perplexed that I would not give him any. I offered him some string cheese instead, which he took, but he still looked at me skeptically.

Next I melted the soap into four cups of water over heat.

I didn't take any pictures of the next bits, but I just directly followed the recipe. The hardest part besides grating the soap was waiting 24 hours to see what it looked like in the end. When I looked at it today it was like gelatin. I filled a clean detergent bottle with half of the mixture and half water. I'll only use about 1/2 a cup since I have a top loader, and I still have an almost full five gallon bucket left to use when I run out. This whole thing was so inexpensive. I got all of my supplies at Walmart, and I think it was around five or six dollars total, but it will clean a zillion (yeah, I know that's not a real number) loads of laundry. I've never been more excited to do my laundry tomorrow morning!

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Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Face vs. Sidewalk

The fourth of July was a family filled day for us. We went to the husband's parent's house where they were hosting a barbecue. The kiddo was able to play with his cousins all day, much to his complete and utter delight. He swam in his pool and even got to bounce around in a bounce house. As the day was winding down, the little guys all got their after dinner burst of energy. They were chasing each other and laughing. Logan went to run down the sidewalk, and just as the words, "Use your walking feet," were sliding out of my mouth...... BOOM!

He landed face first onto the sidewalk. No hands were ever put out to try to soften the blow. There were a few seconds of complete silence and then the scream. Anyone that is around kids for any extended period of time knows that they have all different types of cries. This is the kind you hate hearing.

I felt so bad that he was hurt that I let him eat Popsicle after Popsicle to bring the swelling in his lip down. Once we got home I sat with him and let him watch a television show he never watches, eat M&Ms, and stay up late to watch some fireworks. He forgot about it long before I did.  But that could be because I am looking at this face all the time:

My poor baby. Extra hugs and kisses are in order. And maybe a new toy. 

Monday, July 4, 2011

Naked walls

Commitment phobic. I don't really think most would describe me that way. But I have a deep dark secret.  I have commitment issues when it comes to decorating. All my walls are bare. We have lived in our house for almost three years, and we only have one thing on the walls. That's right...... just one thing. I hope to soon change that. 

Meet blank wall #1. It is a small wall in my dining area that separates the area from the kitchen.

As you can see, it's beige and boring. Please pretend that you don't see those cluttered mismatched frames. But fear not, my friends, I have ideas. Fantastic ideas, because someone else thought of them.

I have a huge love of family photographs. But, I've yet to find an effective way to display them. A wall gallery would solve this problem. 

Here's a smattering of gallery walls that I have been crushing on lately. 

This one? I heart that it adds an accent color. Plus, the chalkboard frame? I wish I could marry it, I adore it so. 
Source: Nesting Place

This picture is from the first home decorating blog, Young House Love, that I started reading. This photo makes me wish for a nice long hallway where I can do this. 
Source: YoungHouseLove
I like this one because all the frames match......
Source: Flickr

and I like this one because they don't. 
Source: House of Turquoise
Finally, for something a bit different and more uniform, I love that these are all equally spaced. 
Source: Parlour
So, what do you think? My mission for the next couple of weeks is to shop around at yard sales to find some really inexpensive frames I love.  Well, to look for frames and for farm related stuff. But that, my lovelies, is for another post.