“Stay”cation…what is it?

outside waterfall cabinWe always need a vacation. Whether you’re a stay at home mother, work a full time job, or just got back from your vacation! I can’t tell you how many times I return from a trip, and am ready to hit the road once more, after the laundry is piled up from a week of fun, and I’m preparing for Monday.

A few people consider a “staycation” as taking a week off of work, and seeing the sights around town, but at night returning to sleep at their home. However personally, I consider a “staycation” as getting OUT of the house, staying in a hotel, motel, cottage or cabin…just so long as its still within a couple hours of home. On my “staycations”, I don’t want the distractions and duties that come along with my homebase. I physically have to leave the premise and not return at the end of the day, in order to welcome that fully relaxed state that occurs with “vacation”.

Earlier in the year I wrote a list of goals to try and accomplish for 2013, and while I won’t complete all, I was able to check #8 off. My #8 was to purchase a groupon getaway, for my husband and I to escape for the weekend. I found a site called “yelp“, which is similar to groupon’s deals, and purchased a one night $95 coupon that was good for $125 at the Anderson Creek Cabins located in Glen Rose, TX. We booked two nights: Friday & Saturday, applied the coupon, & were able to pay a little less than $300 lodging for the whole weekend!

I would recommend this refuge of accommodation for couples, families, or those not into “roughing it aka camping in tents”. We had all the amenities that are present with a normal hotel, except we were away from the hustle and bustle of city life., oh, AND we had a full sized kitchen.

The pleasant innkeepers of the quaint cabins provide: pancake mix, syrup, popcorn, starbucks tea, & coffee in each cabin, and then cut firewood which could be picked up any time throughout the day at a designated wood pile, for an enjoyable cozy campfire at night. Propane grills are provided on the deck of each cabin for grilling, and the spacing of the four cabins, is far enough from each, that you cannot hear or even see your neighbor “campers”!

We stayed in the “Waterfall Cabin”, which when provided with a decent amount of rainfall, produces a waterfall that can be viewed from your personal deck. Unfortunately, as we’ve been in a bit of a drought, there was just a lovely view of the rock face sans water.

If you enjoy hiking, nature, or have children who like dinosaurs, Dinosaur Valley State Park is less than five minutes from the Anderson Creek Cabins. The hikes are easy, not even intermediate, unless of course you are going to “get primitive” and decide to hike the path less traveled.dinodino printusAn amazing dessert place in downtown Glen Rose called, “Pie Peddlers“, creates homemade cream & fruit pies, so if you have a sweet tooth, make sure to try a slice of blackberry pie and key lime pie. It was delicious and so worth it!!pie peddlerspie

Next time you are interested in a inexpensive getaway for the weekend, check groupon or yelp, because you just might be packing your bags sooner than you realize! Have fun friend & share your finds!

UPDATE! the painting progression…

This gallery contains 3 photos.

So its only been four months since we moved into our new home, even though it feels like a year. Working ourselves a little too hard every weekend… we had/have a goal to get every room painted (we’ll see), crown molding and … Continue reading

AMAZING shower/bath soap scum remover

7We all have many “pins” in our Pinterest accounts. However, instead of adding new ones to the “I can do this” board, I decided to try my saved DIY’s and see if they are actually  Pinterest “pass or fails”. Here is one that passes with flying colors!!!

I saved a soap scum removal idea a couple months ago, and this weekend was shocked to find it was the best cleaner I have ever used. EVER! And I’ve tried everything from: Clorox, bleach, Tilex, Clorox, you name it! This cleaning recipe calls for only 2 ingredients, and you won’t find yourself breaking your arm scrubbing for endless periods of time. Please try it, I swear you won’t ever use another tile cleaner/soap scum removal ever again 🙂

What you need:

  • 1/2  cup Dawn detergent (already had)
  • 1/2 cup white vinegar (heat this in the microwave until boiling) (already had)
  • (1) spray bottle (already had)
  • dirty shower or tub

HOW:

  1. Heat 1/2 cup white vinegar in microwave until boiling. Remove from microwave to cool for about 30 sec. (or at least long enough so as not to melt your spray bottle)
  2. Pour the white vinegar into spray bottle
  3. Pour 1/2 cup Dawn detergent into spray bottle
  4. Shake Well. It will turn into a sort of foam inside your spray bottle. Not to worry. This is good.
  5. Spray glass walls on inside of shower and on tile, or bottom of tub.
  6. Leave to soak for at least 3 hours.
  7. Wipe down with sponge and water. (I did this while I showered!)

FYI: Our shower is small so I only needed 1/2 cup of white vinegar and Dawn. If you have a bigger shower or tub, or are wanting to clean more than one bathroom, double your formula! Also, your bathroom will smell a little weird for a couple hours after you have wiped glass and/or tile clean, but it is nothing you can’t get rid of with a nice candle.

BEFORE PICS:

Letting the sprayed formula soak in for a couple hours:

1

AFTER PICTURES:

432

Try it and Thank me later!!

The not so delectable evening of eating healthy.

Face it. Most “healthy” meals are not “I crave” delicious. And none of “you get used to it after a while and you’ve adapted to a healthier lifestyle” shit. One never “craves” kale, carrot juice, squash, potatoes without butter, omelets without cheese, life without bread, pancakes without bacon, a DIET, and I could go on.

Recently at my casa, we have failed attempted to start eating healthier, and one of the veggie meals I made for dinner the other night, while visually pleasing, and wonderful to whip up for: the inlaws, “meeting of the parents,” grandparents, someone trying to watch their weight….it isn’t anything anyone will ever ask for on death row, their birthday, etc.

Here is the original inspiration picture I “re-pinned” on Pinterest and decided to recreate:

1AND my version with a few tweaks:

Ingredients:

  • PREHEAT oven to 350 degrees
  • 1 green zucchini
  • 1 yellow squash
  • 1 red potato
  • 1/2 cup chopped onions
  • 1 tablespoon of EVOO
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese
  • dash of salt & pepper to season

Note to reader: We aren’t fans of tomatoes so they were omitted.  However, the juiciness that comes from those little red sun lovers, was definitely missing in “our vegetable medley”. If made again (probably not), I would add a little butter to the bottom of glass cookware (for flavor) and instead of parmesan, I would opt for mozzarella. The parmesan did not bake as prettily (as I think mozzarella would) or as the cheese in the PINTEREST picture, and was on the slightly crispy side! Lastly, as there are only two of us in la casa…I only used 1 vegetable each, and we had leftovers (which went in the trash), that could have fed another 3 guests. I would suggest adding 1 of each vegetable for 5 or more individuals.

1. Gather all ingredients. Slice & Chop 

 2. In a bowl, take your salt, pepper, rosemary, and 1/2 of garlic measured- tossing your vegetables with EVOO so as to be coated evenly.  Next take sliced zucchini, squash, and red potato along with your chosen cookware. Alternate slices to make for a splendid photo opportunity, to trick the children into thinking its going to be the best vegetable dish they’ll ever eat, or show the in-laws that you really are the ideal American Mrs.

3.  Sprinkle remainder of garlic, all of onions and cheese (of choice) on top of sliced produce. s5Bake at 350, covered, for 20-40 minutes (this depends on your oven temps)

Lastly, IF YOU TRY IT, I am open to suggestions on making this dish more flavorful. Like I mentioned above, we are trying to eat healthier on a daily basis 🙂

DIY Chalkboard Frame

You many have seen pictures of a chalkboard frame at the recent surprise maternity party I helped throw for Mrs. Irvin, and due to many requests…here is how I made it. Supplies: -old frame (already had) – 1/8″ 2×4 temp … Continue reading

Unique Baby Shower Idea – A Surprise Maternity Shower (Not for Baby, But for Mommy)

I have the best sisters and friends in the whole world. This Saturday, they threw me a surprise party. Better yet? It was a surprise maternity wear shower. What’s that, you ask? It’s an original idea my sister Ashley came … Continue reading

A Facelift…

Q: Easiest & Affordable way to change the look of your home?

A: Paint

Here are a few amazing room transformations and furniture makeovers with paint.  FYI, these are not images of my home, as it will be a work in progress for the next couple years.

slide_292065_2339285_freebefore-after-green-paintGreenChinaCabinetDining Room BeforeBoard & Batten Dining Room Makeover 3cgbeforeandafter_thumb

Sherwin Williams has a sale about 2 or 3 times a year with their paint being 40% off, and about 3 weeks before we were to move into our new home, I went ahead and bought about 27 cans during their awesome sale! Something people don’t know, is that you can buy their “paint in the can” without having color added. Then, at a later date when you have decided on your colors…. bring the paint back & they will add color (free of course, since its already been paid for at an earlier date.) Also, if you estimated more paint than necessary, you can return it (with receipt), unless of course you have added the color to it. (I believe there is a 60 day return policy, so just figure it out sooner than later.)

Another paint estimated tidbit: Apparently, when you have popcorn removed from ceilings, its likely to need double the amount of ceiling paint you actually think is necessary, because the ceiling will just drink it up.

About a week ago, I mentioned reader, that there would be pictures of my updated laundry room…but guess what? I’m not finished. Between working full time, and driving about 2 and a half hours a day for this job…I am usually exhausted when I finally get home at 6:30 in the evening. My husband and I have been trying to push through our “paint reno”  after work everyday, but the process has been slow going.

Today I just have some progress pictures…but next week I promise, I will have images of our finished “completed for now” master closet & laundry room.

Goal for this week: Finish painting ALL closets & complete laundry room

Ongoing Project: Painting Living Area, Question Room, Kitchen, & all bedrooms

$5.75 Thats Worth Your Time

So, there were 2 trash bags filled with: 1) entryway floor mat, 2) bath mat, 3) set of sheets, 4) mattress protector, & 5) master bed quilt/comforter. For a month these items were chillin’  in their transient home, when 2 days ago, sick of … Continue reading

IT’S OUR ONE YEAR ANNIVERSARY!

IT'S OUR ONE YEAR ANNIVERSARY!

THANKS FOR FOLLOWING, COMMENTING, SHARING AND LIKING OUR POSTS!

HERE’S TO MANY, MANY MORE YEARS OF FUN!

“Repo”-ing your own lawn!

Inspiring song of my day today: “The Forgotten Overture”, Finding Neverland You will never know the emotions first time homeowners experience until you purchase your first house. Its been one week since we’ve had the keys to our new home. … Continue reading