Sunday, August 24, 2014

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Packing up for the move!

Hey there everyone! Just a quick little note to let you know that I am moving! To my own domain that is :)
This week I will be taking the week off to work on getting Daily DIY on to it's own domain name!!
I am super nervous about doing it, but I realize it is the best thing for me to do!
So if you are just finding us, please be patient for about a week while we get moved and work out the kinks.
There are plenty of links for you to check out while your here. And I wills till be checking emails and receiving comments.
Im super excited about the move and I think you will be too!  So until then ... I'm off to pack!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Yard Sale Finds: Bulletin Board Make-over

As I have said in previous posts, I am a yard sale junkie! I love getting up on a Saturday morning (who am I kidding! I don't love getting up ANY morning, but I do it!) and hopping in the truck with mom and scoping out the neighbors trash wonderful treasures! I also love to share my Yard Sale Finds with all of you.
Sometimes we strike out that's for sure. But other times .... we Score!
Even if it's used and abused, every now and then you can find that needle in the hay stack. And make it into something you simply adore.

A few weeks ago I found this cork board/bulletin board. The color was sort of an off white, and to me it was dingy looking. Of course it didn't match the color pallet I am going for in the kitchen and I wanted to "beach it up " a bit.

Daily DIY Life
I don't know who Chic is .. but she certainly wasn't here! I knew I had to give this bulletin board a fresh make over.
Daily DIY Life

A little paint and some starfish should do it.

The wood frame got a fresh coat of white craft paint and a bit of light brown for de stressing. I wanted to paint the cork blue, but decided it would be a bit to wild for the theme I was going for. I gave the cork a fresh coat of brown paint and it was way to dark. I watered down  some white craft paint and blended it into the brown. To my surprise I was pleasantly surprised the way it resembled sand (to me anyway lol) The over all look of the white over the brown also softened it up a bit.

Daily DIY Life

The starfish I also found at a yard sale for 50 cents... With a little hot glue they are the perfect accent!

Here is the finished project! I know this really wasn't "trash" to treasure, but it needed a make-over for sure. I'm very happy with the way it turned out. It is eye catching when you first walk into the kitchen and functional for all of our daily notes. With the kids starting back to school this week, I know it will fill up fast. I'm thinking some cute sea shell push pins need to be made next to complete the look.

Daily DIY Life

This past week we have hit the jackpot when it comes to our Yard Sale finds! I got an adorable table with drop down sides I am going to make into my office desk. My favorite yard sale find of all a FREE solid wood dresser that I will be making over for the teens room.
You won't want to miss these 2 Make-overs I'm so excited about them!
Make sure you are following us on FACEBOOK and on TWITTER so you can see when they are finished! You can also join our newsletter by clicking on the button at the top of your screen. Thank You!

Do you have any trash to treasure stories of your own? I would love to hear about them!

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Quick & Easy Meatball Casserole

Happy Saturday my friends!
I hope everyone is enjoying their weekend so far. I am a working mom, and I work on the weekends and in the evenings, so it is sometimes very challenging to make sure my teens and hubby have a good hearty meal on the nights I'm away from home.
My favorite things to make are the make ahead meals or crock pot dinners on those nights for quick and easy weeknight dinners or weekend dinners for that matter. It's easy for them to toss the pan I have prepared into the oven when it's dinner time. Or I can set the crock pot early in the day so everything is ready to eat when they are ready.

We do some meal freezing, but not as much as I would like. I really want to work on that. Someday I will have a months supply of dinners frozen and ready when ever we need them ... ahhhh in a perfect world LOL

I do like to freeze home made meatballs. They hold up well and are easy enough for the teens to defrost and add sauce to. For meatballs subs, meatball skewers (recipe here) even a quick spaghetti dinner on a busy week night. 

This past week we decided to try a meatball casserole. Everyone loved it, and not quite as messy as a meatball sub since you eat it with a fork :) I cheated a little and used a jar sauce since that is what I had on hand. Our favorite by far is Francesco Rinaldi. (not a plug or endorsement, it really is our favorite jar sauce in a pinch)
The meatballs I made from scratch. My kids don't like onions or peppers (weird I know!) so I just use lots of spices to compensate as much as I can for some flavor. Here's how I made them...

2 pounds ground beef (or turkey)
2 eggs
3/4 cup seasoned bread crumbs
2 Tbs ketchup
1 Tbs mustard
1 Tbs Worcestershire sauce
1 Tbs garlic powder
1 Tbs onion powder
1 Tbs parsley
salt & pepper to taste

Mix all ingredients well but don't over mix, this will make the meat tough.
preheat oven to 350 degrees. Form your meatballs into 2 - 3 inch balls depending on your preference.
Bake in 350 degree oven for about 20 minutes. turning once half way through.
Drain off your grease and plunge into your favorite tomato sauce. Or let them cool and freeze in freezer bags.

Our Meatball casserole idea came from my 15 year old. He had a similar version at a friends house for dinner one night and has been requesting it ever since. They used lots of veggies like a good parent would LOL so I had to adapt :) It was the perfect dish for an easy weeknight dinner.

We tried to do ours as "loaves" but it was to messy to stay together like a lasagne would. Which was fine, it still tasted great!
Just layer  your casserole as follows...

a little sauce on the bottom so your bread don't stick.
one layer of good crusty french bread slices
a layer of meatballs and sauce (don't add to much sauce)
a layer of mozzarella cheese
another layer of bread, a layer of meatballs , a layer of cheese
last layer .... one more layer of bread. top your casserole with some sauce and cheese

bake in a 350 degree oven for about 20 minutes. Until the cheese melts and your casserole is bubbling along the edges.

Let it set for about 10 minutes before cutting right into it. Serve with a nice green garden salad.

Unlike most tomato sauce recipes this is NOT better the next day. The bread gets way to soggy the longer it sits. Just my opinion. We did enjoy it that night, and it was a very filling meal. Even for the growing teens.

I think this is now one of our go to quick week night meals. It pleases everyone and is pretty easy to make. Even if you have to make a batch of meatballs. Give it a try and let me know what you think.
Do you have any "go to " quick and easy weeknight meals? I would love to see them!

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!


Thursday, August 14, 2014

Building Traditions - Christmas Cookie Swap

Did you know there is just 20 Fridays until Christmas!!! ...
What ?? When did THIS happen!
It's TRUE! Just 20 more Fridays until Christmas! Wow, this year has gone by so fast.
It is already mid- August! That means fall is right around the corner, but it also means Christmas and the holiday season is just around the next corner.
I guess it really is true, the older you get the faster each year goes by. It feels like we just cleaned up all the wrapping paper and put the decorations away last week. (no, I didn't really do that , but it sure feels like it.)

When it comes to the holidays, we have so many traditions in our family. Some are very small like what we have EVERY Christmas morning for breakfast. French toast casserole! I think it has been 8 or 9 years now that we make this in our house. I make sure it is ready and all set to go in the fridge the night before, and when we all wake up Christmas morning it goes in the oven. By the time we are done opening our gifts, breakfast is ready. The kids look forward to it every year!  (Even the older ones)

One of my other favorite traditions that I have is with my girlfriends a few weeks before Christmas.
Every year we all get together and have an amazing cookie swap! Yes ... we share cookies! How fun is that? All the benefits of holiday baking and 1/4 of the work.
Have you ever been to or hosted a cookie swap?
If the answer is no, you will want to continue reading.
If the answer is yes, you will still want to continue reading :)

5 years ago a bunch of us girls wanted to have a Christmas paty of sorts just for the ladies. After poking around on line and reading a few suggestions for all girls parties, we decided a cookie swap would be the perfect thing to do. And the yearly tradition was formed!

It started small (just 7 people I believe) and as the years went on and people heard what a great time we were having the number of attendees grew and grew. Last year I believe we had 18 or 19 swappers. Every year I have to get more and more creative. So I decided to start this page for all the rookie and veteran cookie swappers out there. To share ideas, games, themes and of course cookie recipes!

I know it is only August, but this does take a little planning. You also want to get your invites out pretty early so everyone is sure to make it around their busy holiday schedules. Let's face it, there is always 100 different parties/events to attend as the holidays get closer.

If you are ready to start planning your party, Click on the Cookies below! It will take you to all the wonderful in's and out's of getting started. As always, feedback is encouraged!
If you have a game idea or a recipe you think is a must have for a cookie swap please email it to me!

I hope this page grows and grows with some wonderful family traditions from all of our readers!

Happy Swapping! ............. On to the Cookie Swap pages!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

HELP - It needs a facelift!

Hey everyone!
At the risk of opening up my very cluttered and un managed home to you all, I have decided to start a help page. Not to help you LOL but to help ME! Wait .. don't leave! I need your assistance :)

My home needs A LOT of help. No seriously, it is very lack luster in appearance.
We live in a 2 family home, and my landlord is very flexible with what i do to the inside. As long as I don't make any structural changes, he is open to it. Paint, decor, ect is all fair game!

A little bit of a back story here before we go on ..
A year ago, we decided to pack up and move states. We sold/donated everything and came here on a whim with just clothes. So we are completely starting over from scratch.
Many of our items were given to us from some wonderful folks, and some we bought new and some found at yard sales.

When I first looked at this apartment, I hated it. The lady that lived here before was a slob! To put it nicely :) I don't think she cleaned a day that she lived here. I walked in and looked around a bit to be nice, but told my hubby absolutely NOT will we live there. After a few months of the landlord and my perfect next door neighbor (she lives alone and we hardly ever see her, but when we do she is as sweet as can be.) cleaned and painted and did some serious work inside, I decided we should take another look since the price and location was right for all our needs. And it's just 2 houses down from my mother, which I LOVE!
He did a great job cleaning up the place and making it "livable" enough that I decided why not? We can make this work for us. Some paint and decorations, we can make this home.

I have lived here since December of 2013 and really haven't done what I had planned to do. And I just don't know where to start. I attempted to paint the cabinets one day out of boredom and a can of paint he left in the basement. But I certainly didn't do it correctly and I haven't even finished them. half brown half white. They are really a mess !

Over the last few months doing this blog I have met some really wonderful and insightful people. As well as discovering some amazing blogs about home making and decorating and DIY projects for the home. It's inspiring! Sure I can whip up a batch of cupcakes and decorate them wonderfully. Or feed my family of 4 on a limited budget, and eat pretty well doing it. But I need some serious help when it comes to making my house what I want it to be.
That is where you come in!
I'm going to show you an area in my house that needs serious help (this could take a while! ) I will take all suggestions on the how to and what to do  to make it awesome.
Then we will choose one. Document the process of making it wonderful and reveal the final project.

I am going to show you these areas in my house as they are. I will not alter them  on the original pictures. (PLEASE DON'T JUDGE ME!! LOL) I already know I need help! Isn't that the first step to fixing a problem?

Also, I need to and want to do this on a budget. So please keep that in mind when you are pitching your ideas and products.

So here goes....

The first area I want to fix is the display cabinet in my kitchen!
I am leaning towards a beach theme for the kitchen. Natural browns and tans to go with the white. Accented with light blue and dark blue nautical themed items.

So here it is (I can't believe I'm showing you all this!!) ... My "junk drawer" of cabinets!

As you can see it is a catch all for everything! Yarn, craft supplies, crock pot, empty picture frames, papers, party supplies. It is my "junk drawer" for the bigger things that don't actually fit IN a drawer!(That's a whole 'nother post! Yikes I have a junk drawer problem!)
It's pretty, and it has potential if it is done right.

My thoughts:
I was thinking of keeping the walls the sandy brown color and painting the wood white. Baskets are an option for the inside, but I feel with the glass it should be something a bit more "pretty".

How would you fix this major eye sore? What products and/or color pallet would you suggest?
Leave your comments and suggestions below. I will review them all and pick one that best meets our family needs and document the progress as it goes along.

Thanks in advance for all your help in making our house a lovely home ... on a budget!

Please note: I know I am probably going to get the negative comments, and the hate mail ect. from posting my home issues with everyone on the web. Please, if you have negative things to say just keep them to yourself. I genuinely would like help and ideas to pretty up my house, and it would be a great story to follow during the process of HOW I did it, and WHAT I did to take it to the next level.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Missy's Perfect Pumpkin Bread

Hey ya'll welcome to part 3 in the quick bread series. I was going to save this pumpkin bread recipe until the last addition, but my friend Missy has been on my mind so much lately, I had to share it now instead of later.
Before I just belt out the recipe, I need to tell you a little story (could turn into a big story) about an online relationship that I built with one of the most amazing women in the entire world.
If this is just not your cup of tea, please feel free to scroll down to the recipe below.

Many years ago (14+ years actually) My husband and I bought this new contraption to go online. It was a WebTV .. anyone else have one of these? You could hook it up to your TV set and get online. Websites, email ect. for a pretty cheap price. Was before computers were so highly in use.
Anyway, I was so new to the online world I decided to check out a few news groups.
I joined a group, at the time it was called Cyber Sisters. Everyone chatted with each other and shared so much. It was a nice escape.
I met Missy through Cyber Sisters, and we hit it off immediately. She loved to cook, loved to do crafts and we had so many things in common. What once was just a talking on line friendship, turned into hours almost every day of real talking on the phone. The more we talked the closer we got.
When I became pregnant with my 4th child, Missy and a few other girls decided to throw me a baby shower... ONLINE! How cool is that? All the ladies  had my gifts mailed to my house. And we had an online baby shower! As I opened the gifts via a chat room (we didn't have skype or a webcam like you could now a days) It was a blast.
Sadly, we lost Missy a few years back to a medical complication. I miss her every day and always have her on my mind and in my heart. I know she's watching down on us and yelling at me when I use the wrong pan to cook or bake something in! LOL
I have quite a few recipes that Missy shared with me, but this Pumpkin bread is my most favorite.
I have no idea if this was her original creation or if she got it out of a book somewhere. All I know is that it is perfect! Super moist, and oh so flavorful.

With the fall season right around the corner, Pumpkin is the perfect compliment to any dinner. Or just as satisfying as a quick breakfast in the morning. Give this recipe a try, you will keep it in your must haves for a very long time.

3 cups canned pumpkin puree
1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
4 cups white sugar
6 eggs
4 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 1/2 teaspoons ground nutmeg
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cloves

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour three 9x5 inch loaf pans.In a large bowl, mix together the pumpkin, oil, sugar, and eggs. In a seperate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves; stir into the pumpkin mixture until well blended. Divide the batter evenly between the prepared pans. Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes to 1 hour. Until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Perfect every time!

This recipe is part 3 of the quick bread series! Did you miss the first 2 ?
You can find them here:
Mouth Watering Zucchini Bread
Moist and Delicious Strawberry Bread

We have 2 more quick bread recipes to share  in this series!! If you love quick breads, and don't want to miss out on the up coming recipes be sure to  LIKE US ON FACEBOOK  or FOLLOW US ON TWITTER

Now a few fun facts about Pumpkins!

Photo courtesy of Julie @ Cretinons Farm stand!

  • Pumpkins are a member of the gourd family
  • The largest pumpkin pie ever baked was in 2005 and weighed 2,020 pounds.
  • Pumpkins are low in calories, fat, and sodium and high in fiber. They are good sources of Vitamin A, Vitamin B, potassium, protein, and iron
  • The heaviest pumpkin weighed 1,810 lb 8 oz and was presented by Chris Stevens at the Stillwater Harvest Fest in Stillwater, Minnesota, in October 2010
  • Pumpkin seeds should be planted between the last week of May and the middle of June. They take between 90 and 120 days to grow and are picked in October when they are bright orange in color
  • Pumpkin flowers are edible.
  • Pumpkins are 90 percent water.
  • Pumpkins are  a fruit.
  • The name pumpkin comes from the Greek word ‘pepon’, meaning ‘large melon