Curly Crafty Mom: August 2016

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

September Monthly Goals

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This year I've decided to set three monthly goals for myself each month. These will be lighter goals that I should be able to finish within the month. I used to do yearly resolutions, but I wanted to try out monthly goals this year. I am really enjoying it so far and I feel like I accomplished a lot with my January-June Goals. The recap for my June Goals will be at the bottom of this post.

So, here are my September Goals!

1. Decorate Inside & Out for the Fall
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I want to start decorating THIS week for the fall! I hate when I get started late, so I am going to start on September 1st this year! It is still really stinking hot here, though... fingers crossed for cooler weather! The photo above is what my fall porch looked like last year.

2. Stencil Bathroom Wall
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This past weekend, Brian and I finally painted the hall bathroom a light (almost white) gray. We started this project on Saturday after I ran 18 miles. I know... I'm crazy. But, it kept my sore muscles moving!

We also changed out the light fixture (you saw a photo of it if you follow me on SnapChat at @curlycraftymom) and I'll share a reveal photo soon. The next step is stenciling one of the walls in the room with the pattern you see above in a darker gray. I can't wait!

3. Take a Day OFF, to MYSELF.
Taking care of the kids nonstop all summer was exhausting. Now it is a new kind of exhausting with all of the after (and during) school activities, homework, etc. If I'm not doing something with or for the kids, I am working on blog stuff and if I'm not working on the blog... I'm working on marathon training or cleaning the house! SO... I am going to take a day off to myself in September. I have no idea what I'll do... no idea... a day without a to do list is a new realm for me.

How did I do on my August Goals?

1. Tidy Up the Backyard
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The back yard is all tidied up and ready for the fall! I want to plant some mums and pansies, all the summer annual stuff is looking scraggly and needs to go!

2. Eat More Veggies at Lunch
I did ok with this... I was really digging sugar snap peas and baby carrots in August. I also love cherry tomatoes, but I was trying to eat something besides those for a change.

3. Try and Finish Up July Goals
DONE!!! I got the bathroom painted and the wedding ring inspected and cleaned!

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And, my friend Lauren from Mom Home Guide is also sharing her monthly goals today!

Are you doing monthly goals? What are they? I'd love to hear about them in the comments!

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

My fifth UNBOXING Video - {Peaches & Petals - July}

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Today I am sharing my July Peaches and Petals box. This box had some great items in it and also some so-so products, but everything I will use! My favorite item is the BoomBotix Wireless Speaker, which retails on Amazon for around $13. This speaker has a little clip on it and will be great to take along when I go out running with my running group on some of our long marathon training runs! I can pair it with my iPhone and clip it onto my running shorts! I can also move it from room to room in the house and listen to music while I clean, cook, etc. What a nice little gem to have around the house! The wet wring wave towel will also be nice to have after my runs and the daisy headband is just adorable!

I should be receiving my August box this week and it is supposed to have long mermaid socks in it... should be interesting yet fun. :) 

I'm also excited to share yet ANOTHER unboxing video- this time with my new skinny lens and shotgun mic! The quality is SOOO much better. I still have a lot to learn though! Be sure to check it out below:

Peaches & Petals UnBoxing - July


I'd appreciate your support, please watch my video, subscribe to my channel, give me a thumbs up, share if you want and I love comments. I got a lot of comments, like and views on my last video THANKS to all of my supportive readers!!! I appreciate it so much! And, if there is any suggestions you have, leave it in the comments below or on You Tube!

A little about Peaches & Petals... Peaches & Petals is a subscription box that is $19.99 a month and you can cancel at anytime. I share what I have received in this video AND in the photos pictured below (if you don't have time to watch the video, or if you want more details).

What I like about Peaches & Petals is that they send you a HUGE monthly box. It isn't just beauty products, but a variety of items for women. I already subscribe to Ipsy and it is nice to receive some 'larger' beauty products such as bath bombs and also other non-beauty items, such as mugs, adult coloring books, etc.

So, How Do You Get Signed Up?
You can use my referral code by clicking HERE and use one of these coupon codes for the June box! Please make sure to let me know in the comments if you do sign up, so I can make sure I earn the points for your referral (there has been some trouble with this in the past!).

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Or if you aren't interested in the watch, you can save 10% off your box with the code PEACH10%.

July Items in Peaches & Petals Box

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BoomBotix Wireless Speaker - This wireless speaker is portable, cute and it even has a little clip on it.

Wet Wring Wave Towel - You get this towel wet, wave it and then use it behind your neck, to wipe your face... whatever you need to do to cool off! This will be wonderful to use after some of my runs until it cool downs!


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Makeup Cleansing Wipes - These makeup cleansing wipes do the job, but I wouldn't go out and buy them again.

Chroma Lights Hair Spray Color in Metallic Teal - This hair spray color was fun to use on my son for his crazy hair day at karate. However, it did take a couple of days to wash out of his hair and I'm not sure if I want to try it on my highlighted hair!

Body Wash in a Sponge - This was my reward item that I got with points that I received from people that had subscribed under me. Unfortunately, this item was in one of my previous boxes! I hope to receive something unique next time!

And, don't forget... if you want to subscribe to the box, you can use my referral code by clicking HERE and by using one of the referral codes listed above to get a discount on your first box!
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Monday, August 29, 2016

Be Football Ready with this Delicious Dip and More! #GameTimeHosting

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #GameTimeHosting #CollectiveBias
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Football season is here and I like to keep my home stocked with some football watching staples such as Diet Coke®, Sprite and Wise Chips from Family Dollar. I also enjoy making my families favorite dip, which is SO easy and has a unique ingredient in it! I will share the recipe below in this post, so keep reading!

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Family Dollar is so convenient, with several locations close to me. I saw this display of Coca-Cola and Wise Chips products as soon as I walked in the store. There was a variety of flavored chips, some in flavors you are used to and some flavors had a twist to them for a little fun!

You can also SAVE $1 when you buy (1) 12-pack of any Coca-Cola® product plus (1) Wise snack 3oz or larger at Family Dollar today!

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These are the products I picked up at Family Dollar, all of which my family loves!


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Diet Coke and Sprite


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Wise Ridgies in Original and Sour Cream and Onion



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Now let me share with you how I set up this easy snacking station at my home for football games.


Easy & Delicious Ranch Dip with Secret Ingredient
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This dip is so easy to make, just combine 5 ingredients and mix!

Delicious Ranch Dip with Secret Ingredient

Ingredients:
16 oz Hellman's Mayo
16 oz Small Curd Cottage Cheese (the secret ingredient!)
8 oz Sour Cream
1 packet Hidden Valley Ranch powder dressing
1 tablespoon Lemon Juice

Directions:
Mix all ingredients together. Keep refrigerated.

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In a large bowl, combine 16 oz of mayo and 16 oz of small curd cottage cheese. The small curd cottage cheese is the secret ingredient and really gives the dip such a nice flavor and a little texture! Just trust me, it is SO good!


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Add 8 oz of sour cream and a tablespoon (or half) of a lemon.


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Add a Ranch packet to the top of the ingredients in the bowl and mix together. Refrigerate and enjoy when your football game starts!


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Serve the dip with Wise chips, which are perfect for dipping! You can even add some vegetables, too.


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I also like to add a sweet treat to our football snacking table and these boxed brownies that I decorated with white icing to make them into 'football brownies' were quick and easy.


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Having something to wash your meal down with helps, too! Some of our family members prefer to drink straight out of the bottle, or I have mason jars with ice and cute straws that they can pour their beverage into, too.


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I hope you get to try this delicious dip I shared and that you get some snacking station ideas of your own for the next game.

What are some of your favorite snacks for the game? Be sure to check out Family Dollar for Coca-Cola beverages and Wise snacks!

You can also visit Family Dollar at Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and YouTube!

Sunday, August 28, 2016

The Creative Corner Link Up Party & Weekly Recap - 08/26/16

Welcome back to our DIY/Craft Link Up Party! Thank you for stopping by every week!

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Today's Feature is Coastal Farmhouse Tablescape by Lauren McBride.


I like to share a little recap of my week at the start of each party:
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(Left Photo) One of Autumn's good friends joined the cross country team this year. They are having a blast! (Right Photo) Kohl's sent me $10 in Kohl's Birthday Cash and I found this Nike running tank on the clearance rack for $10.50. Yep, I only paid .50 cents for it!


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(Left Photo) I filmed my Peaches and Petals unboxing video this week and tried out my new skinny lens and shot gun mic. Oh wow, the quality is SO much better. I can't wait to share with y'all. I still have A LOT to learn, though. (Right Photo) Rose, our rag doll kitty hopped in the box during my video and then FELL out of it. Not sure if I'm going to cut that part yet or not. ::grin::


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(Left Photo) Do you ever have crafting projects that go bad? Well... I was in our garage getting a step ladder out and two of our bigger ladders fell down AND then a long (yet skinny) piece of wood fell on my car and left a DENT. UGHHH! Brian thinks he can pop it out, but thank goodness I don't have a new car. (Right Photo) It's been awhile since I've ran on my favorite trail (Meramec Bottom Trail), but I was lucky enough to run 5 miles on it this weekend. But, this humidity needs to go away. It is not fun to run in 75-100% humidity!

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The DIY Mommy Blog | Facebook | Pinterest | Twitter | Google+ | Instagram | Bloglovin’
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Joy in our Home Blog | Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter | Google + | Bloglovin

Check out what my fellow bloggers have been up to and don’t forget to check out my feature for this week as well.
The Creative Corner link party | Come to inspire, stay to be inspired. Share your latest DIY, craft, and home decor posts! 
Ready to share what has been motivating you this past week? Link up a recent post of yours that motivates you to create or just be awesome! Our goal is for this link up to focus on craft, DIY, & home posts so please try to remember that when linking up.
  • Limit three links per week and remember to link directly to your post, not your blog.
  • Do not link stores, giveaways, or other link parties.
  • Be sure to hop around some of the other posts that have been linked up to share the love and get motivated by what others have been up to.
Each week, your hosts will choose a post to feature from the previous week. If you want a chance at being featured, you must follow all of the hosts in someway. By linking up, you agree to let each host share your photo and link back to your site, as well as receive a weekly e-mail letting you know when the party is live. We will never give your e-mail or info to anyone, nor will we spam you! The Creative Corner link party goes live Sunday 6pm PST and ends Thursday at 5pm PST. I'd love for you to grab The Creative Corner button in my sidebar to put on your own blog if you want to help spread the love!

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Now hop over to all the other cohost’s blogs and see what caught their eye this week. You just might be featured there too! Don’t forget to grab this button if you’ve been featured.

The Creative Corner link party | Come to inspire, stay to be inspired. Share your latest DIY, craft, and home decor posts!

Join my NEW Monthly Newsletter - Curly Crafty Mom News!
I've created a monthly newsletter for this blog and I would LOVE for you to join my mailing list! I plan to add topics to the newsletter that aren't on the blog, including a blog tip of the month, an oldie but goodie (I'll share one of my old posts that was popular), a featured blogger of the month AND more! You can subscribe by entering your email address in below and hitting 'Subscribe'!

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Friday, August 26, 2016

Italy Vacation: Rome, Day 2

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Hi everyone! I am back to recap Day 2 in Rome, the day we got to tour the Colosseum, walk through the Roman Forum, Pantheon, etc. 

You can see my Rome, Day 1 recap HERE.

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We started the morning with breakfast at our hotel, Empire Palace. When booking our hotels, we had the travel agent make sure that our hotels offered a hot breakfast. There were always danishes, cheeses, FRESH tomatoes, FRESHLY squeezed juices (an assortment!), deliciously prepared eggs... oh, breakfast was a treat! Empire Palace would even make us up a free cappuccino every morning!

We did one tour to see everything and it was a lot of walking! But, seeing the Colosseum in person has always been such a big dream of mine. My breath was taken away, it was OLD yet beautiful and heroic. It was smaller then I had thought it'd be... but, this was the Roman times. I took a lot of photos, so scroll on down to see them.

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Note the cross in the photo above.

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This was a view looking out from the Colosseum.

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The back side of the Colosseum.


Roman Forum & Surrounding Area
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Our tour continued outside the Colosseum... first we saw the Arch of Constantine. There are many triumphal arches in Rome.


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Arch of Titus


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Trevi Fountain
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Trevi Fountain. It was REALLY crowded, so this is the best photo I could take.


Pantheon
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I was really beyond myself to get to see the Pantheon, too. Just such an amazing structure and I remember studying this in art history at college. Photos really do not do justice, it is such an honor that I was able to finally see it!


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The rotunda with the oculus looking out to the sky. It was challenging to take photos of this with my camera. :(


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After our tour, our guide recommended a place for lunch and we decided to try it out. I need to find the name of it and I'll add it to this post once I get it. We had bruschetta for an appetizer and then I ordered this seafood pasta dish.


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Brian ordered this simple pasta dish, but it was delicious! We also had tiramisu here and it was my absolute FAVORITE from the entire trip. It was more like a pudding with the lady fingers on the bottom. It was so good. I should have ordered a second one! We got to sit outside for lunch and a little bird kept landing on our table. :)

Now, for dinner... yes, we did go back to the hotel and take a nap in-between these meals. We did A LOT of walking with the tour and it was scorching hot!


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For dinner we ate at another restaurant by our hotel, which I need to look up the name of it. We had so many nice restaurants by our hotel that I would dine at these places again in a heart beat if we are ever back in Rome. We ordered a bottle of wine for dinner and then the bread was so tough and plain (bread in Italy is for dipping... not really something you want to waste calories on) that I asked for some butter. They brought little curls of butter out over arugula (or some sort of lettuce). So pretty! My advice is to skip the Italian bread they bring to the table and enjoy everything else, because it is SO good! They also do not put ice in the water there and it is served luke warm. I saw one lady at a restaurant ask for ice and they brought her out a little bucket of ice. Too cute. Gotta love the Italians, they don't do anything simple!


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Our appetizer was for two... uh... yeah. Then, our pizza came out. This was my FAVORITE pizza from our entire stay in Italy. It was SO, so good. I used to LOVE Chicago deep dish pizza, but now Italian pizza wins overall. New York pizza I'm just so-so about. But, WOW. What I would do for this pizza to be delivered to my door. The pizza is HEAVILY topped with sauce and the crust is almost a little soggy from it, so you want to roll your pizza slice in half and eat it like a sandwich. Otherwise, you'll have your pizza in your lap. :)


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Dessert and cappuccinos. The Italians don't drink coffee after the afternoon, but we love to have a hot drink with our desserts from time to time. I had a chocolate brownie and Brian had a lemon cake. They had us go inside to view the desserts that they had out on a table. So delicious!

I hope you enjoyed this recap post as these are A LOT of work! I will probably go back and add more tidbits when I have more time. Next Friday I will be sharing our third day in Rome, which was also our last full day in Rome before we headed to Florence!
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