Tag Archives for " homemaking "

September 7, 2016

4 Things About Moving That Are Just Stressful (and how to make them suck less)

4 Things About Moving That Are Just Stressful (and how to make them suck less)


You guys, it only took me until I was 27, but I finally bought my first home with my husband! We have always rented which is all well and good, until you want to move and you find out that it’s hundreds of dollars a month cheaper to buy a house rather than rent one. And I really do mean hundreds. I don’t understand it, but it is what it is. It was time for us to stop playing house and actually make a home. So we set out on a search for *the* house. We downloaded all the apps, we even went a little old school and grabbed a newspaper. And after a few months of searching it happened….we found our home! Awesome right? Little fireworks shot off and rainbows appeared above our head, all the way until we signed the paper for closing. Then suddenly the rainbows faded away and we were left with a cloud of Moving stress. Continue reading

2016 Giving Back Packs Event

Real Advice Gal Giving Back Packs 2016 Event

Every year, we seek sponsors to support us in our efforts to supply as many back packs full of school supplies to needy children as we can. I am happy that we have several great sponsors this year! Wonderful Pistachios and Aldi are returning sponsors this year! We are also grateful for our newest sponsor, Classroom Direct.

2016 Annual Giving Back Packs Event

We also enlist the help of dozens of other bloggers to each fill at least one back pack with school supplies and donate it to a child, school, or organization. You can help by visiting all of the blogger sites listed below. You can help even more by leaving an encouraging comment for our bloggers or sharing their posts on Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest! All of your help makes it possible for us to continue the event from year to year and secure sponsorship.


Giving Back Packs School Supplies 2016


Giving Back Packs 2016

Michele Brosius over at Just 2 Sisters writes about teaching her nieces and nephews to give back through her annual participation in the Giving BackPack Project.

Mommy Makes Time  writes about Making a Difference- Being The Good in the world. 

You need to share these 9 TIPS FOR SURVIVING HIGH SCHOOL with your high schooler. Many thanks to Nell at Slap Dash Mom

Simply Sherryl shares 5 Ways to Save on Back to School Shopping 

We Make 7 shares her experience shopping for supplies and donating her back pack.

Over at ABC Creative Learning, Victoria, is Paying It Forward Giving Back School Supplies

Teaching her kids to give back is important to the Mama Maven.

Real Advice Gal,  Amee,  shares her wisdom about BUILDING SELF ESTEEM AS A TEACHER OF SPECIAL EDUCATION

Dina at My Un-Entitled Life has a love affair with Wonderful Pistachios and loves to Give Back Packs too!

With 3 kids in school Saving You Dinero knows the cost of school supplies and the importance of teaching her kids to give back.

Wonderful Pistachios are just one of the best 18 portable snacks for teens and tweens over at Saved By Grace.

Kansas Schools will be open and one young man will have all the supplies he needs thanks to She Smiles Within.

Rachelle of Love Laughter Forever After and her daughter are starting the school year off on a bright note by donating a back pack full of school supplies to their new school.

We all want to know “How many glue sticks does one kid really need”! The answer inspired Real Advice Gal writer, Gina to participate in the Giving Back Packs Event.

Salted Almond and Pistachio Bark

Check out this delicious Salted Almond and Pistachio Bark Recipe that I made using Wonderful Pistachios

Effortless meals for the busy back to school season

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #EffortlessMeals #CollectiveBias
I know school is just around the corner for most of us and with it comes the harried and hurried dinner times. Gone are the lazy days of summer and sitting down all together for dinner is going to become harder and harder as we now have homework, basketball practice, PTA meetings etc.  Even though we are a homeschooling family this time of year is also a time of adjustment to our new routine with less time for this mom who is now also the teacher, janitor, and nurse to make dinner for the family and get everyone to the table at the same time. No worries though I have a plan to help get everyone fed during our busy back to school season.
 effortless meals for the busy back to school season
Adding to the dinner time stress is that  at least here in VA it is still to hot outside to want to turn the oven. That means I either have to stand in front of the stove to cook dinner (who has time for that) or throw something in the crock pot. Don’t get me wrong I love my crock pot and it will be my best friends during the upcoming months but sometimes we would rather have a meal that doesn’t come out of the crock pot. So what’s left? The grill! What is even better than cooking dinner on the grill? Cooking pizza for dinner on the grill.
 effortless meals pizza on the grill
I have a grilling secret that I am going to share with you. You can make a pizza on the grill. No worries, I know you don’t have time to make dough and prepare a pizza. You don’t have to, trust me you are going to love this. I recently discovered Marketside Pizza at Walmart. It is so easy and really effortless to just stop by Walmart on your way home and grab a couple of pizzas, a 2-liter bottle of Coca- Cola and a bag of apples.
 Effortless meals for everyone's busy back to school season
Just look for the effortless meals signs at Walmart and you will be able to easily find every thing you need for dinner.
effortless meals coca cola at walmart
Grilling pizza is easy. Just treat your grill like your oven.

Directions for cooking pizza on the grill:

1. Heat up the grill until it is 350°F.
effortless meals heat grill
2. Remove the plastic wrap from the pizza and slide the pizza off the cardboard directly onto the grill.
3. Cook it for about 10-15 minutes and try not to open the grill while it is cooking. Remember you want to treat your grill like an oven and keep all the heat inside so the pizza cooks evenly.
 effortless meals take the pizza off the grill
4. You will know it is done when the cheese is all melted and the edges are browned. Use a spatula to slide the pizza off the grill and back onto the cardboard from the package or a baking sheet. I use the cardboard so there is less to clean up.
effortless meals slice the pizza with a pizza wheel
While your pizza is on the grill you can slice up the apples and pour the soda and that’s it! Dinner is done! Seriously it is that easy!
 Marketside Pepperoni Pizza is the perfect meal for back to school season
While you are at Walmart you can also pick up an effortless meal for lunch the next day and save your self a night of packing lunches. Marketside Deli 6″ deli sandwiches are the perfect size for packing along with a bag of chips and a 16oz bottle of Coca Cola. I loved the convenience of getting everything I needed to be able to save time and enjoy dinner with my family.
 marketside sandwich for lunch is a great time saver
Have you thought about your plan of attack for feeding your family during this busy back to school season? Have you ever tried the Marketside products at Walmart? How about the rotisserie chicken? Walmart has a Rotisserie Chicken Meal which comes with Rotisserie Chicken (29 oz.), 2 lb. Side (Potato Salad, Macaroni Salad, or Cole Slaw), and 2 Liter Coca-Cola product. These effortless meals will be a real life saver during this busy back to school season. How would you serve up these Marketside meals with your Coca-Cola?

August 7, 2015

Quick Bathroom Clean Up Tips

Quick Bathroom Clean Up Tips

Quick Bathroom Clean Up Tips

With a family of 5 in 900 square feet and sharing 1 bathroom, it is no surprise that the bathroom is the room that gets dirtiest the fastest. This makes it a never ending battle to keep the bathroom in “Company Worthy” appearance. I have begged, pleaded and even nagged to get everyone on the same page but no one can see the things I see (or at least that is what they tell me. ) I decided that I would just take matters into my own hands and take a few minutes every day to make sure it was ready for whatever the day held. In order to save me time, I follow these Quick Bathroom Clean Up Tips. Even when an unexpected visitor drops by, I can have it cleaned up before they even notice I have left the room.

Continue reading

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

July 21, 2014

Game of Thrones Bathroom Redo Featuring Behr Paint!

Game of Thrones Bathroom Redo Featuring Behr Paint!

Disclosure: I was provided paint from the wonderful people at Behr Paint to facilitate this review, no other type of compensation was offered, as always, all thoughts and opinions are my own 🙂 



Do I have any Game of Thrones fans out there!? I for one am a HUGE fan, and when I had the opportunity to work with Behr Paint I knew exactly what I wanted to do. As some of you have seen, I recently did a Butterfly Room Redo Featuring Behr Paint for my daughter, so I was super excited to team up with them again for this Game of Thrones Bathroom Redo!  Continue reading

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