Fun & Fantastic Ideas

Setting Up My 2014 Goals (A Free Printable)

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I hope everyone had a fantastic Christmas!!!  My boys lost their minds when they saw Santa had brought them the Skylander Swap Force Guys they were hoping for.


Now, it’s time to start thinking about next year.



Last year I wrote down my first set of Goals.  I listed all sorts of things I wanted to do both big (Lose 20 pounds!) and small (clean the playroom).


Incredibly enough, I checked off many more items than I thought I would.


Well, honestly, checking any off was impressive from my end.


Either way, it was such a success that I decided to do it again this year.  I am trying to be a little less specific but more defined in my approach (did that make sense? I think it did).


I created 6 categories with 5 goals each (yes, some may deem 30 goals excessive, but hey, go big or go home).


I focused on Home, Health, Family, Career, Finance and the big catch-all Other.


What to know what my goals are?  Sorry, can’t tell you.  If I tell you, they wouldn’t come true.


What? That is only true about wishes?




Ok, Some of my goals are carry over’s from last year (Yes, I am talking weight loss and debt reduction.  I guess this year’s ‘theme’ is streamlining….) But I also hope to blog more (probably come February… I can feel your utter disappointment…. Sorry.)  And I want to spend more time with my boys.


You can download the Goal Worksheet here…. Happy Goal Setting!

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DIY – Teeth Whitener (with Hydrogen Peroxide & Baking Soda)

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Back before my hiatus from blogging, I posted about  how excited I was to get the Crest Whitening Strips on sale.


Fast forward a year and a half and guess what – I have most of the strips left over.  Can we insert a groan here? Another few bucks wasted.


Well, I started getting the urge to whiten my good ol’ chompers again and was instantly brought back to my abandoned Whitening Strips. This time, though, I remembered a conversation with my friend who told me she whitened her teeth with – wait for it – hydrogen peroxide.


I did some searching online – I honestly didn’t remember the ‘how’ of her process and I didn’t think this is one of those things you can completely ‘wing’ (like my coconut oil experiments).


I came up with a plan of action – I would brush my teeth with a combo of baking soda and hydrogen peroxide. And I would do it when my husband was  not looking – this is one those things he would just shake his head about.


Armed with my tools:

  • a baby toothbrush the kids outgrew before I used it ($1.99)
  • my buddy  baking soda (fifty cent at the dollar store)

Sorry, I couldnt help it

  • and a bottle of hydrogen peroxide (which cost me a full buck)

First, I brush my teeth with regular toothpaste.

Then, I simply mix 1 part hydrogen peroxide to 2 parts baking soda in this little bowl (actually, I use an  icing container from a package of Pillsbury Cinnamon Rolls… I kept it because I thought someday it would come in handy.  Look at me – recycling.).

I then use my baby tooth brush and take care of business brushing my teeth. I spit & rinse as usual.

I try to do it every few days.

I swear I noticed a change in my teeth… Has anyone tried this?  Am I slowly losing my mind?

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DIY : Easy, Semi-Homemade Sugar Scrub

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When I saw a Homemade Gardener’s Hand Scrub on One Good Thing by Jillee, I was intrigued.


To say I adore this scrub is an understatement.  I have made it multiple times – and have even given it as gifts!


All you need is a jar, Olay Dishwashing Soap and White Sugar.


Previously I used the pink Olay which smells divine. But this time I wanted something a little different.  So, I went with the blue one.


To me, the real trick is having a great vessel to hold the scrub.  I am totally in love with these little jars (a birthday gift from Mom.  Thanks Momma, I love them!!)


Simply fill it ¾ the way with sugar and add the soap, stirring it as you go along.


That is it.


A word to the wise, I tried using Brown Sugar instead of White Sugar once because I thought it would be ‘exotic’.  It ended up changing the color  – to use a technical term – a poopy pink.  I do not suggest trying that at home.

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DIY – Even More Uses for Coconut Oil

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Ok, so here is a little secret – I love coconut oil.  What?  Did you know that already?



I was able to pick up this “Value” size coconut oil from Fairway for $13.99.  Score, since these are a few of the new uses I have for it:

Make Up Remover

Yes, it takes off makeup like no one’s business – even my mascara.

 All I do is rub a little bit between my fingers and it almost instantly begins to melt.   Then I rub it on my eyes and rinse off. 

Everything should be this simple.


Face Wash

I guess this is almost the same as above.  Maybe I should have lumped these two together.  It is the exact same directions as above except (wait for it) across your whole face.


Shaving Crème

Hum… almost the same directions…..  Rub the coconut oil on the area you want to shave and then – shave!  I get a nice, close shave and my legs are so soft when I am done!   I also noticed I have not nicked my legs since using the coconut oil.  Although there is a chance I am just paying more attention to the process.



I have had a terrible patch of skin on my chest for quite a while.  I have used powders, lotions, scratching and could not get rid of the scaly, yucky skin.  Last week I decided to try this miracle oil.  Guess what – it has finally begun to clear.    I am in utter disbelief. 

Mosquito Repellent

I read online that Coconut Oil is an excellent mosquito repellent- which is incredibly exciting to me.  I am the mosquito’s favorite delicacy.  I get bit multiple times just taking the dogs out.  Dizee is on their menu at any time of the day.

So, I lathered myself up, called the dogs and somehow made it out the door.  While I did not get bit by a single mosquito I was licked almost to the point of paralysis by three hungry beagles.  So much for using this around scent hounds.

I hope to test it out again sometime….

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Freebie: P&G Sample Box

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I love the P&G Sampler Box!  This one has a sample of Gain, Cascade, Pantene and a coupon book.

If this is your first time, you will need to sign up to the P&G site.  I always use my alta-ego - coupon.jedi

Thank you Coupon Pro!

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DIY : Kiddie “Fine” Art

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 Picasso?  Monet? Renoir? They have nothing on these kids…



A few weeks ago AC Moore had a crazy canvas sale.  I paid four smack-a-roos for these two canvases and the paint was on sale at Walmart for $.80 each.  (I saw them even cheaper this weekend at AC Moore… Love that store!  Remember to sign up for AC Moore Rewards!) 



I purchased only colors I liked and would go nice in the living room with our Misty Green paint.  This left no room for queries such as “Mom, I think we should paint this orange like a pumpkin.’  I would have been hard pressed to say “No” to the budding artist.


I was hoping to do some cool hand-art, kind of like these great ideas.  But the kids, as usual, had their own ideas.  I still love the outcome, though! 


I wasn’t sure if these were washable, so I stripped them down to their underwear and had them paint outside.    They were easy enough to hose off afterwards.  I hung them with 3M tabs – good to go!


Max painted a monster catcher- notice all his arms!


Cooper went with a more abstract approach.


I haven’t given up on the hand print animals… but that is for another day!

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Library Reading : The Honest Life by Jessica Alba

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Let me just start with – this book made me want to go out and buy all new organic furniture. Seriously.  

Overall,  I really liked what she had to say about clean eating and healthy living.   I even took a bunch of notes – I am such a nerd!

This is a fantastic reference for someone new to the whole ‘organic-healthy living’ releam.  There are a ton of cute pictures and some interesting ideas (her vanilla scrub uses coconut oil – very cool!).  There is also a seriously awesome Appendix filled with fantastic links to other sites, companies and resources. 

Per a suggestion in the book, I soaked the boys bath toys in a mixture of distilled white vinegar (I added a decent splash) and some warm water.  EWE!!!!!! The stuff that came off the toys was gross – so I will be doing this way more often. 

My only complaint with the book it seemed to be an ad for her Honest Company.  I felt like she was always suggesting something from the vast line of products – floor cleaner, stain remover, etc.  It would have been a bit of a turn-off to me if I was buying the book.  But, since it was a library read, it gets a 8/10.  I am sure Miss Alba would be flattered by that….

I love the library.


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DIY – All Natural Face Scrub Made With Stuff You Have!

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I am in LOVE!  And this is totally the forever kind of love.

These face scrubs are really super simple and it makes my skin incredibly soft! Plus it costs pennies to make! Score!

I have two different concoctions that I use depending on my mood & what I have on hand.  


Olive Oil & Sugar Scrub



Olive Oil is a great moisturizer and sugar is a gentle exfoliator.  I simply add equal amounts of each to a bowl and stir. I apply this to my face in the shower.  I also use it on my elbows, knees and feet. 

I don’t even put on moisturizer after I get out of the shower.   It is that good.



 Coconut Oil & Sugar Scrub

Coconut Oil has approximately 4 million uses.  Seriously – it is like a miracle product.  Same as above, I mix equal parts of coconut oil and sugar and scrub my face.



Fantastic and smells even better than the Olive Oil scrub.  Be wary of random people sniffing your face, though. 


I have used both mixtures multiple times with no issues – no greasy face, no red skin, no dry patches.  My face did not fall off.  However, be smart.  If you have sensitive skin, test a small area before you try this at home. 




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