Category Archives for "DIY/Crafts"

Tips for Table Gardening

Tips for Table Gardening

Table gardening is a great way to garden without a lot of work

What is table gardening? That is the question you may be asking right now. Well it is exactly what it sounds, you have a wooden table that is designed to be able to plant a small garden in it. It stands a little taller than waist high so it is easy to tend. There is a large basin that holds all of the soil. A table garden should come with a liner and dividers so you can plant several different vegetables.

Table Gardening is a fantastic way to grow your own vegetables

This is the Garden Table we purchased. It was so easy to put together (I did it all by myself). The kids loved filling it with soil and mixing in our worm compost. This is our second year and the table is still in great shape. The liner is still in great shape. We simply stirred up the soil in each section and we were ready to plant as soon as the temperature permitted. You can either sow seeds directly or buy plants at your local home improvement store or nursery. We do a combination of both. I am an impatient gardener and like to see things growing.


Benefits of Table Gardening:

1) Great for small spaces – A table garden takes up very little space. Our table garden fits nicely in one corner of our deck. If you want to be able to walk all the way around your table garden then I would say a minimum area you need is 8′ x 12′.

2) Great for Kids – Kids can easily plant and watch their fruits and vegetables grow. They can participate every step of the way from planting seeds or starter plants to watering, to harvesting. I can tell my kids to go get a salad for dinner from the garden.

3. Great for beginner gardeners – Have a black thumb? Me too! No clue where to begin to have a garden? Then you should start with a table garden. You can try lots of things and the effort is minimal so you won’t have wasted all the time and energy if you don’t get the result you were expecting.

4) Very easy maintenance – Very little weeding. Watering is quick, you can use a watering can or the hose. There is no tilling to be done or raking.

Spinach is perfect for a table garden

What types of plants are good for table gardening?

Well personally we have planted everything listed below. Some we are trying for the first time this year. We have had success with everything we have planted so far. Our fist year we turned our table garden into a science experiment and planted six varieties of strawberries. The children tracked on a chart which variety produced the most fruit. They also tasted  and rated the strawberries on a scale of 1-10 to determine which produced the best tasting strawberries.

1. Lettuce (all varieties) – plant early to get the longest season. My kids love taking a pair of scissors out to the table garden and collecting a salad for dinner.

2. Spinach – first time this year but I can’t imagine it would not do well.

3. Carrots – plan on baby carrots. We were to impatient to wait so we picked them early.

4. Strawberries- Table gardening is perfect for strawberries. We picked off the runners so the plants would produce more fruit. If you get ever bearing varieties they will come back year after year.

5. Green peppers – we planted green, yellow, and red peppers last year.

6. Broccoli -new this year

7. Cailiflower – new this year

8. Green Onions – new this year but already 2 inches tall from seed.

9. Herbs – I have not tried but I am tempted to buy a second table just to have my own little herb garden.

10. Basically anything that doesn’t require a ton of space. We plan on trying new things every year.

Broccoli woud be a great plant to try in a table garden

What types of plants are NOT good for table gardening?

Anything that needs lots of space, vines, or climbs. Obviously you can’t grow things like corn, watermelon, or pumpkins in a garden table. Beans, peas, and varieties of squash would not do well either. We grow beans and peas in boxes that we built as part of our creative raised garden beds.

Table gardening is perfect for beginners, small spaces, and those who are short on time. Growing your own fruits and vegetables is such a rewarding and fun experience.

More Gardening Tips:

Creative Raised Garden Beds

Starting a Vegetable Garden

Simple Playdough Recipe

Simple Playdough Recipe

2 Ingredient Simple Playdough Recipe

This Simple Playdough Recipe is a great way to recycle. Do you have conditioner that you do not like? What do you do with it? This is a great way to put it to use. If you have lotions that you’re tired of the scents, this is a nice way to change it up. I can tell you I hate the smell of a traditional playdough but my kids love playing with playdough, that meant that I had to find a way to make playdough for my kids that smells good. The result turned out great, I actually enjoyed the whole activity. It was so easy to make and the kids had a nice time making the playdough since the steps were so easy they were able to do it themselves. This is also a great party idea, you can make this at princess parties or use this to fill easter eggs.

2 Ingredient Simple Playdough Recipe

Simple Playdough Recipe

one (1) cup scented conditioner or lotion
two (2) cups cornstarch
a large bowl and a measuring cup

Simple playdough recipe

Just combine the lotion and cornstarch in a large mixing bowl.

Simple Playdough Recipe

Mix well. You can add more lotion or cornstarch until you achieve desired consistency.

2 ingredient playdough

Also try these other Simple Playdough Recipes

Kids Play Dough Recipe


Valentines Day Homemade Glitter Play-doh!

April 20, 2015

What Can You Recycle in the Bathroom?

Disclosure: This post was brought to you by CARE TO RECYCLE® and The Motherhood. All opinions are my own and I hope you enjoy them.

What can you recycle in the bathroom?

Recycling tips for items found in the bathroom

Earth Day is almost here. That means we all must take charge of our surroundings and figure out ways to make the items we use last longer or uses them in a new way. I know we all have what I call life hacks for the bathroom so I polled a group of my friends to get their best tips for recycling items found in a bathroom.

You know it wasn’t that long ago that I thought a toilet paper holder just held the toilet paper. The dish soap bottle’s only job was to make my hands gorgeous as I attempted to scrap food off dishes. The milk jug was only used to hold the milk… and then came the kids. The brightly colored mass distributed toys are not nearly as fun as the ones we can make using household castoffs. The creativity and environmental impact are invaluable to my children. I suggest you grab your trash and create an imagination station or the latest and greatest car race track, princess purse, sand shovel and squirt bottle.

Not that creative?

recycling tissue holder

Your toilet paper roll could become- binoculars, tunnel, funnel, log cabins, musical instruments. Pencil holders, craft collectors, hamster tunnels, yarn winders, and even a gift holder. Those toilet paper rolls are also great to hold cords (charging cords) and to mark cords behind the computer. They were also helpful to Heather’s color-blind grandfather who used to have the person who did her grandfathers laundry place his socks in the toilet paper rolls and label them with the color they were.


Cover roll w/colored paper, staple one end, pour in dry beans, staple other end, decorate and shake!

The Dish soap bottle-  becomes a squirt toys instead of using the water gun, use them  to put paint in,  make a cool robot add foil, lie flat make a space coaster
How about old tiles you can make a diy ceramic tile coaster .

I know I read in my bathroom. I always have piles of magazines because everyone needs a bubble bath and a magazine. This picture frame is so adorable.

DIY Magazine Picture Frame


I have a bottle of water in my bathroom at all times. I try to drink as much water as possible and we happen to love to do water bottle crafts. We have a huge collection of water bottle crafts.

Towels- An old towels can be sewn  into a bath mat? Or used for scraps to clean or how about turn one into those fancy  hair turbin (like a turbee twist).

Make -up- A hand cream/face cream (short/round) container into a seed starter pots, holders for jewelry, coin keepers, pin holders, bug holders, and you can  make your own beauty products to put back in them like this wonderful lip sugar scrub 

Toothbrushes can be used to clean grout, diamond rings, the wheels on your car, the barbecue and you can even paint with them.

Tissue boxes – They are great for storing wide ribbon, creating hiding places for plastic creatures. If you open up the top a little bit the make a great place to toss a small ball for a quick carnival game.

The key to creating children that recycle is being an example. We do a great deal of recycling but we can always stand to do more. I am committed to learning about how we can do more. I would like to invite you to do the same.

CARE TO RECYCLE® believes that recycling in the bathroom can be a fun family activity; a way for parents to have a teachable moment with their kids and even do some fun projects together. You can find more helpful information such as where to recycle, what to recycle, inspirational quotes, and bathroom recycling projects at

We are co-hosting a twitter party…..

Join the #CareToRecycle Twitter Party on April 22 @ 12 p.m. EDT to talk about fun recycling tips and tricks for you and your whole family, and a chance to win some great prizes!

What: Did you know that four out of five American adults aren’t consistently recycling their personal health and beauty products? We’re talking perfectly recyclable everyday bathroom items like empty shampoo and lotion bottles. That’s why The Motherhood is excited to join the Johnson & Johnson Family of Consumer Companies’ CARE TO RECYCLE® program to help spread the word about recycling in the bathroom. This Earth Day, we’re getting the whole family involved!

During the chat, we’ll be sharing fun, easy ways to teach your kids the importance of recycling beyond the kitchen and into the bathroom, and we encourage you to share your tips, too! We will be joined by two special guests, Keep America Beautiful and Recyclebank, who will be stopping by to share their tips and ideas, as well.

When: Wednesday, April 22 (Earth Day) at noon ET

Where: We’ll be on Twitter – follow the #CareToRecycle hashtag to track the conversation. You can see the details and RSVP via this Vite:

Hashtag: #CareToRecycle

Prizes: During the chat, we’ll be giving away five prizes to randomly selected participants who correctly answer the trivia questions tweeted by @TMChatHost. Four (4) winners will receive one (1) prize pack of Johnson & Johnson Consumer Companies health and beauty products. One (1) winner will receive one (1) partner prize pack including a $100 gift card to, courtesy of Recyclebank, and a family pack of t-shirts made from recycled content, courtesy of Keep America Beautiful.

Prizes limited to U.S. participants only. Official rules here.

Hosts: @TheMotherhood, @TMChatHost, @CooperMunroe, @EmilyMcKhann

Co-hosts: @realadvicegal, @carogonza, @shoppingduck, @LittleUsBlog, @EmilyARoach, @busymomblog, @KBWhiskey, @allthingsfadra, @ALuckyLadybug, @ourpieceofearth

Special guests: @Recyclebank, @recyclesday

Imagination is FREE………… Reduce, Reuse, Recycle but most importantly spend time imagining with your children!!

Check out these Recycling Fun Facts & Stats:

  • Research conducted with the Shelton Group revealed that:
    • While almost 70% of Americans say they consistently recycle, only 1 in 5 say they consistently recycle items they use in the bathroom.
    • Nearly 40% of Americans say they never recycle in the bathroom.
    • 20% of Americans say they didn’t know bathroom products were recyclable.
    • More than half of consumers will only recycle if they are certain the item is recyclable or is clearly labeled as such.
    • 50% of parents say their children educate the rest of the family about the benefits of recycling.
  • Plastics Information:
    • #1 and #2 Plastics (PET & HDPE) are the most commonly collected plastics in municipalities –
    • #5 plastic (PP or polypropylene) collection is increasing, but it’s still not accepted in many municipal recycling collections. Check with your local recycling office or this handy recycling locator,, to be sure.
    • Plastic Tubes are usually a mix of plastic laminates and are NOT recyclable.
    • Plastic caps can usually be left on (here’s a guide), but pumps need to be removed before recycling bottles.
    • For all products, it’s recommended to give the bottle a quick rinse to remove residue before placing in recycling bin.  Here’s an example!

How to Organize your Home on a Budget

Disclosure: This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of DollarTree. However, these are my real messes and my real solutions for how to organize your home on a budget.

My $11 Home Organization Project

My Real Advice Gal tip when it comes to home organization is to just start. Start somewhere and start small. Personally, when I am facing a big job and I just don’t know where to start I can get overwhelmed, then I shut down, and decide to pretend the job doesn’t really need to be done. I can live with things just the way they are. But eventually, I have to face the music because living with the mess is making me more crazy than trying to face the problem and get the job done. I know many of you have walked in these shoes. Ok starting small…

I chose to organize two areas of my home. Two small areas that are making me Crazy with a capital C! First, my make up drawer and then my medicine cupboard.

The Make Up Drawer! 

Many friends in my life have heard me exclaim once or twice that “I am not a girly-girl” and certainly not a big make up girl. Well…I think my make up drawer claims otherwise. When did this happen? Wowza! Guess I do like a bit of make up. Ok, so this area of my life is making me crazy because I can never find what I am looking for and because I keep my hair brush in the drawer everything always has hair on it. Yes, I have very long hair and shed worse than a husky in the spring all year round. What a mess.

Organize two areas of your home fore $10

So if you really want to know how to organize your home on a budget your first step is to make a trip to the Dollar Tree. I have found it is the best place to buy storage containers and items to help you get organized.  They have a great selection of containers and I often find things that I can use creatively to help declutter or organize and area of my home.

how to organize your home on a budget

I found these great bins that are designed to go in drawers, come in different sizes for organizing various items, and also snap together so they don’t slide around in the drawer. Hallelujah!!! Let the fun begin. So I sorted everything in to the bins and threw away old brushes and make up.

getting organized with containers from the dollar tree

Everything in the basket went in the garbage. The markers?? Why did I have markers in the make up drawer??? Who knows but they went back in the classroom where they belong. When I put the bins in the drawers I had enough room to put my brushes in the space left over. Perfect!!! This not so girly girl owns 18 eye shadows, 15 eye liners, and 5 different types of mascara, HA! This drawer makes me so happy now. I can’t believe the transformation!

completely reorganized make up drawer with the perfect drawer organizers from Dollar Tree


The Medicine Cupboard!

Okay, so the problem with the medicine cupboard is that it is in the highest cupboard in our home way out of the reach of small hands. The cupboard is above the microwave directly above the stove. While this is great for safety it does not make it easy to find things. Since I am vertically challenged, everything is shoved in there or more like tossed in there while I am standing on my tippy toes. So when someone gets sick, if I can’t find the right kind of medicine in the disorganized cupboard I go out to the pharmacy and get some more. Then it gets tossed or shoved into the cupboard and the cycle continues. I found 24 medicine dosage cups in a basket in the back of this cupboard!

Organize two areas of your home fore $10

So first things first, I threw away everything that was expired or we no longer need, like infant medicine or dosing cups. My youngest child is 4! Then I sorted the medicine into categories: First Aid, Kids cough/cold, Adult Cough/Cold, Pain, Allergy and Digestive.

storage containers for how to organize your home on a budget

I measured my cupboard before I went shopping and bought 7 containers from the Dollar Tree that I knew would all fit in my cupboard. I made sure they all had lids so I could stack them and also get them in and out of the cupboard easily. I made labels using index cards cut in half and taped them to the containers. No more hunting for medicine that is all jumbled and cluttered randomly in baskets. Now I can pull out the container with the right type of medicine and quickly and easily see if we have what I need.

organized medicine cupboard

Thanks to the Dollar Tree I was able to organize two areas of my home for just $11. Organizing these areas will save me both time and money! What area of your home would you like to clean up and get organized? I hope you will use some of tips for how to organize your home on a budget. Remember start small but start somewhere.

5 Spring Break Activities for Kids at Home

Spring Break Activities for Kids at Home

Spring Break Activities for Kids

Ahhh, Spring Break. That wonderful time when the kids are home and you get to finally enjoy some of the nice Spring weather. It’s also the time when boredom can get the best of you if you don’t have somewhat of a plan. I try to plan ahead some fun Spring Break activities for kids at home. It definitely makes life a little bit easier and less stressful.After all, it’s no fun for anyone when the kids have nothing to do!

Here are 5 fun Spring Break activities for kids at home.

1. Set up a tent in the backyard and have a camping staycation. Have hot dogs or burgers and s’mores or ice cream for dessert. Don’t forget the flashlights and sleeping bags!

2. Get everyone off the couch and having fun. Put together a neighborhood fitness day. Invite everyone to get active and have fun with different activities such as a softball game and an obstacle course. This is great fun and is also great for your health.

3. If the weather is not nice enough to stay outdoors, plan for something like a movie marathon event where everyone gets to choose a favorite family movie to watch. Don’t forget snacks and juices boxes.

4. Have the kid’s walk the “runway” in a Spring fashion show. Let them show off some of their new or favorite Spring attire that it’s been too cold to wear. Take lots of pictures and put together an online photo album. The fashion show can be done in the house or the backyard if the weather is nice.

5. Spring is a beautiful time of year. Why not go on a nature walk? Take pictures and collect leaves, flowers or even rocks! Use your smartphone to look up the different plants and birds that you see.

There are so many things that you can do during Spring Break without traveling or spending lots of money. Be creative and think outside the box. If you aren’t sure where to begin, start with my 5 Spring Break activities for kids. Remember the most important thing is having fun and creating memories.

Also check out my other spring break tips:

Spring Crafts for Kids
Fun and Cheap Spring Break Staycation Ideas
Spring Break Budget Saving Tips

Spring Break Staycation

March 2, 2015

Disney Party with FREE Disney Food Label Printables!

Showing Our #DisneySide With A Party + FREE Disney Food Label Printables!

Disclosure: I was provided awesome party supplies from Disney in ordered to facilitate this post, but as always, all thoughts and opinions are my own! 

#DisneySide Party Fun + FREE Printables

February has been a tough month around my house! We have had 1 little one with a case of Scarlet Fever, another one with a bad cold, and to top it all off, we were stuck in the house for over a week due to a freak ice/snow storm. So to say that we needed a little Disney Magic in our house is an understatement. 3 big events happen in our home during February and those are Valentine’s Day, my moms birthday and my husbands moms birthday so we decided to combine all of them into one fun and fantastic #DisneySide party!Continue reading