Tuesday, October 29, 2013


There's my skirt!
Pattern: Simplicity 2215
It has pockets! The pattern calls for an invisible zipper, but I used a "fashion" zipper (so said the packaging). The pattern also called for one of those invisible clasp things. I had buttons, so I rigged up a button loop. 

I actually made TWO skirts!

Here they are with their visible zippers and button clasps. Sewing on a zipper is quite the task! I would definitely get kicked out of fashion school for these! I'm very proud of them.

Here's the button loop...

And a diagram.

Dinner was amazing! We had Asian Chicken Stir-Fry with egg rolls. The egg rolls were from the Chinese restaurant down the road, so that was one less thing to worry about while cooking chicken in the skillet for the first time! Oh yeah, she used a wok, but I don't have a wok. The skillet worked fine, but my chicken was tough. I think that was due to the chef's lack of experience! From the words of Alanis Morissette, "you live, you learn." I also used some frozen veggies. They would have been crispier if I had used fresh veggies. The recipe also called for lard or peanut oil. I made do with coconut oil (side note below).

It sounds like I'm praising a dish I hardly made, but it's all in the sauce! That sauce was yummy! Yummy enough to overlook tough chicken and veggies that weren't as crispy as the could have been.

Coconut Oil: I use it all the time in my hair. Rub it in your hair about 30 min to an hour before you shower, focusing on the ends. Rinse well, and you will have amazingly soft, silky hair! I also put it on dry skin, lips, and nails. I pretty much bath in the stuff! It works.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Page Views and Meatloaf

So, Google Blogger tells me that I've had 230 views. This seems pretty steep considering I haven't had a single comment. Maybe I'm being followed by robots? This may be unconventional, but if someone could say hi or something, that would be awesome! And not you, mom! :)


We had awesome Easy Meatloaf for dinner with mashed potatoes and green beans. I added about half a cup of grated carrot. Meatloaf is such a magical thing! You can add pretty much anything, and it'll still be awesome. I made some meatloaf cupcakes last week with zucchini (squeeze the moisture out with a paper towel). My little sisters LOVE it every time, no matter what veggies are in it. It's probably a ketchup thing.

I keep having this problem with my meatloaf. I'm sure if I google it, I would find a lot of people with the same problem. My meatloaf is pretty much meat-soup unless I pour some of the juices out. Maybe if I made it in a casserole dish? Or put it on a grate? I'll have to try that next time. It just looks so unappetizing in a casserole dish. My dad showed me a video of Sandra Lee's meatloaf. At least all the grease and fat was able to escape!

I have nothing against Sandra Lee! She doesn't suck as the title of the video states... She's just a lady chasing her dreams.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

5th Grade Halloween Party

Painting my little sisters' nails for Halloween! 7 year old is a cat, and 10 year old is a zombie princess!

Cat Nails
Base: Essie, Eternal Optimist
Claw: Revlon Colorstay, Stiletto
Used art tape from Staple's to make the point.

Zombie Princess Nails
Base: OPI, Jade is the New Black
Tips: Revlon Colorstay, Stiletto
Dots: Sally Hansen, Gilty Pleasure
Art tape to make tips. Toothpick to make dots.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Emotional Immunities

Candy Corn Nail Art!
Black: Revlon Colorstay, Stiletto
White: Essie, Blanc
Orange: China Glaze, Riveting
Yellow: SinfulColors, Pull Over

Can't keep my hands out tha candy corn! No, seriously... Will someone take these away from me? I can't part with them on my own!

Today, I was watching Disney's Mulan on Netflix, and the sprinklers turned on! I'm not one to get emotional over anything, but there's something going on with me lately. I seem to be... TURNING INTO MY MOTHER! Oh god, spare me! Maybe I'll just watch a bunch of sad stuff and rebuild my emotional immunities! I tried to talk to her about it, and she said, "Yeah, I cry during commercials." That seems to be my fate, but not if I can help it!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Elementary Math

I don't know if you guys have had a run in with "subitizing" yet, but it's this new math they're teaching third graders in my little sisters' school system. It's basically a form of mental math that suppose to help the kids understand the numbers and math properties more qualitatively rather than learning the algorithms we older mathematicians have come to know and love. Instead of stacking the numbers and carrying (addition) or borrowing (subtraction), they are making number sentences (horizontal line) and adding this, subtracting that, adding, subtracting, ect. until they reach the desired number. They will know it is the desired number if they keep up with the adding and subtracting they did in the process. I can hardly keep up with it, and I have a degree in math! How can I expect my 8 year old sister, with ADD, to keep up?

Anyway, two years later, what do you know? They are stacking the numbers! Of course, she's showing me how her teacher told her to do it, and she's doing it all wrong! They have to do these math problems online where the computer checks the answer automatically and brings her score up/down when she answers correctly/incorrectly. One minute, she has a score of 65, 75 the next, then back down to 65. It's driving both of us crazy! She seems to be making careless mistakes because she hasn't had practice stacking smaller numbers, and she's trying to work with millions, thousands, and hundreds. (Now I'm just speculating why she's doing poorly...)

Overall, I don't believe in the methods they are teaching the children currently, but I am interested to see how it effects their math skills in the future. Depending on the child and how well they grasped the concepts of numbers using subitizing, I think it could go either way. I also think my sister would be an adding/subtracting expert in fifth grade if she had been stacking the numbers since third grade. Although I have my doubts, I hope subitizing helps her in the future and doesn't put her and her classmates behind.

I had spoken to a woman who taught sixth grade math in the area. She mentioned that her students were doing poorly because they lacked the basic math skills. She had to teach her sixth graders to add and subtract by stacking numbers before they could move on to the appropriate level. Hopefully this wont happen with my sister and her classmates since they are working with number stacking in fifth grade, but it does make me question the reasoning behind teaching subitizing at such a young age. Once we all learn the algorithms for the basic functions, it would definitely be an advantage to learn subitizing. It is a more efficient and intimate way to play with numbers.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Hardwood Flooring and Jello

Chicken Pot Pie Cupcakes for dinner! Instead of the Herbs De Provce, I used 1 tsp Dak's Green Zest. The kids loved them! We had carrots and butter beans (used the Dak's in the butter beans too. Yummy!)

Last week, I made some carrots with orange juice, zest, brown sugar and butter, and my 10 year old sister loved them! This week they only had sugar and butter, and she hated them...

So, carpet seems pretty awesome right now. I have to sweep my room every week because the dirt sits on top of the hardwood waiting to hitch a ride on my bare feet and drive me bananas. When we had carpet, it would sink into the carpet and stay! Oh my, that sounds so nasty! But it sounds better than sweeping my floor right now...

I'm trying to meditate everyday - starting yesterday. I had a pretty good start. About half way through, Pandora (Calm Meditation Radio) chose an advertisement. A few hours earlier, my mom and little sister (the 7 year old) made Jello. Near the end of my 15 minutes, my sister was running through the house shouting "I HATE J-E-L-L-O!" (spelling it out and everything) because it wasn't ready, and she had to go to bed.
Tonight was much better. She peeked in my room about 5 minutes in, making me laugh, and she meditated the rest of the 10 minutes with me. What a cutie! She has her moments.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Julep's Post

Julep getting ready to write a post.

Taylor was having trouble deciding what to write, so I told her I'd take over. My name is Julep, and I slept on Taylor's pillow ALL DAY, so I'm super excited and well rested for this post!

Mom got me some new food at the pet store, and she's mixing it with canned pumpkin to help with my digestion. It's DELICIOUS. So delicious, I pooped AND peed in the den!

The humans had some chicken and broccoli casserole. The smaller ones didn't like it too much, but they ate it all. The bigger humans liked it a lot! They also had rice, corn, asparagus, and crescent rolls. That's so much food, I don't see how they eat so much! But I didn't try it because I was too busy eating my food with pumpkin!

OH, mom's home! I gotta go playyyyyyyyy!

Good bye humans - you animals!,

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Caught Red Handed

Sasha cleaning herself with my drinking water.
Had to be quick capturing this evidence, hence the vertical video.

Friday, October 18, 2013

MIA (or Inaction)

Blogging is a pretty cool thing. You can learn from others, teach others, make money, reevaluate yourself, ect... You know. But I'm having trouble getting into it! I'll admit, I am well known to start a project and not finish it or come up with a (at the time) brilliant idea and not follow through. This blog is a different story, though. I'm am a social media avoider, if you will. Blogging is a real challenge for me!

Since my last post, I haven't learned much about taking care of a house. I've given up on cleaning up after everyone; too big a job for two hands! I've moved on to hopefully more fruitful goals. (This works out nicely since I'm notorious for abandoning projects!)

On the cooking side of things, I've learned that if there is more than one thing I know we don't stock in the kitchen that is required in a recipe, I ought not make that recipe. And canned veggies are my friend when it comes to side dishes.

Side note:
Two(ish) years ago, I rummaged through the cabinets trying to find something different to snack on and came across a can of peas and carrots. I hastily heated up my snack and began chowing down only to find something hard in my second bite. I pull out what looked like a cat toe with claw attached! In terror, I toss the toe and the rest of my snack into the trash. I've shied away from using these canned veggies for so long, but dinner is an emergency situation! 
What to take from this story...
A: Don't trust things in a can.
B: Always search your canned food before eating.
C: Don't worry! Andrew Zimmern has eaten worse things than what could be in this can.

This post is officially aweful! ONWARD!

Words of cooking wisdom from my grandfather: If you like it, add more of it. If you don't like it, take it out.

I took on a mini-project or two yesterday during my Saguaro Madness. 
For the visual senses...

(excuse my man hands and terrible cuticles!)
Base: SinfulColors, Hazard 952
Brush Strokes: (yellow) SinfulColors, Pull Over 955
(purple) Essie, Play Date 
Saguaros: OPI, Jade is the New Black
Sparkles: OPI, Pirouette My Whistle

Sweater: Thrift Store Find, $2.99. I find the best sweaters in the men's section! This is 100% wool J. Crew XL. Must have found the dryer... Lucky me!
Saguaro: Sewing scraps, $0. So, I believe if I had used iron on interfacing, my cactus wouldn't have bubbled. I'm new to this sewing gig, but it's pretty fun so far!