Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Pinterest Project 42 - Pregnancy announcement

When we got past the first trimester with Baby #3, I wanted to make a pregnancy announcement via Facebook. Pregnancy announcements run rampant on Pinterest. There's the super cute shoe announcement with the pun about the family growing by two feet:

There's the math equation:

There's the using the big siblings to make the announcement:
And on and on....

So, I pieced together a few ideas and came up with this, which my wonderful husband shot and added the "We're being promoted in January..." text:

Pinterest Projects 40 and 41 - Gender Reveal Party

When we found out we were pregnant with Baby #3, we wanted to find a way to make finding out his/her gender special. Evan was our first baby, so that's always really exciting. We found out at the 20 week ultrasound and immediately told everyone. Owen was our second baby, and we decided not to find out his gender until he arrived, which was awesome. I was *pretty* confident he was going to be a boy, but we didn't know for sure until he was born.

So, we decided to host a gender reveal party for Baby #3. Obviously, I started planning for the gender reveal by researching on Pinterest. The theme I liked best was a football/tailgate party for lots of reasons: I love football, I liked that it would be really inclusive of all the men who would be attending, tailgate-style food is really kid-friendly, and the party was scheduled for the end of August, right at the kick-off (pun intended!) of football season.

I made my own invitations (Pinterest Project 40) using my Silhouette with inspiration from Pinterest. Here's the inspiration (mainly used for the wording):

And here is my version:

I also researched the "how" part of the reveal on Pinterest (Pinterest Project 41). There's the ever-popular cake filling option, the super fun balloon-in-a-box reveal, along with a million other ideas. The final decision came down to three really fun ideas:
  1. A pinata with red or blue colored confetti inside
  2. A balloon with red or blue colored confetti inside
  3. A silly string "fight"
We settled on the silly string. Here is an image from the moment of reveal:
As you can see, this is the moment we found out that #3 is a GIRL! We were really surprised and thrilled!!!

Pinterest Project 39 - Lego travel box (iteration #3)

I've been making these Lego travel boxes for a bit now, and have now developed a third version. Let me remind you of version 1 and version 2. Version 1 involved having to spray paint a wooden box, which was a pain in the butt since I really stink at using spray paint. Version 2 was a big improvement using a small tupperware-style container. And here is version 3:

The box here is a 12x12 scrapbook box, so it's a lot bigger than version 2. That means that it can fit Duplos (the bigger size Legos) and a Duplo plate on the back. The labels on the front are cut from vinyl using my Silhouette. I made this version for my nearly 4-year-old niece for Christmas. I also ended up making them for Owen and Evan.

Pinterest Project 38 - Monthly Onesies

I love all the monthly pictures that so many of my friends take of their babies and post on Facebook. But I have never been good about taking them with the boys, so I am planning to be better about that with Baby Adelyn. Here are some examples of the types of onesies that are all over Pinterest:

Most of these onesies are created by just adding stickers, but I wanted something a little more permanent (plus, I wanted to try an idea on my Silhouette!). So, I used contact paper to cut templates and then used fabric paint in yellow, blue, magenta and lime green to create the onesies. I made a set for us and a set for a coworker who is also having a little girl in the same timeframe we are. Here they are all wrapped up for Sarah:

I'll update once Adelyn is here with pictures of her wearing the onesies!

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Pinterest Projects 36 and 37 - Grill apron and spices

My plans for Christmas involved trying to make everyone's gifts. I did a pretty good job, and here are a couple of the results! In Wayne's family, the adults draw names and then purchase gifts for that one person. Wayne drew his brother David, and I drew Wayne's dad, so I went to my Pinterest board "Gifts for Dudes" and decided to make grill kits for both guys (and for Wayne too!).

Pinterest Project #36 was a grill apron sporting the phrase "Caution: Extremely Hot." I used my Silhouette to cut a stencil and then used fabric paint. Here is my inspiration. And here is the final product:

And being modeled by Wayne's dad:

Pinterest Project #37 was homemade grill spices to go with the grill kit. Here is my inspiration, and here is my finished product:
 I used spice jars that I bought on Amazon that have magnets on the underside, printed the labels and then just modge podged them onto the spice jars. I made Tandoori Rub for chicken, Greek Rub for chicken or pork, and Brown Sugar Rub for pork or beef.

To top off the grill kits, I included three 3-pound bags of scented wood chips (mesquite, apple, and hickory), a stainless steel smoker box, and an instant-read digital thermometer. I think the grill kits were well-received, and I look forward to Wayne testing all of the stuff out once it becomes grill weather again!

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Pinterest Project #35 - Skinny Broccoli Salad

In the same once-a-month-cooking session that yielded the Buttermilk Herb Chicken and the Lime Chicken also involved making a few lunch dishes. including this skinny broccoli salad. Here's what my version looked like packed in my lunch box:

I love broccoli salad, and this salad is even better than the usual because it uses ranch dressing rather than mayonnaise (not a fan of mayo!). I also love all the pretty colors and all the veggies--broccoli, cauliflower, red pepper, green pepper, tomatoes. YUM. I left out the olives because I can't stand them.

Two improvements for next time:
  1. Do not freeze. The salad was amazing in the "fresh" version, but when frozen, it became really runny.
  2. Add hard-boiled egg for some protein. Then the salad would be a complete meal, maybe with some crackers or something.

Pinterest Project #34 - Lime Chicken with Corn and Black Beans

This post is LONG overdue... this recipe was part of my August once-a-month-cooking routine, but I never blogged about it.

At any rate, before the school year started, I was doing really well with once-a-month-cooking, and this was an excellent post with several good ideas for recipes. I ended up making the cilantro lime chicken with corn and black beans because our family LOVES Mexican food. The boys adore quesadillas, and so do Wayne and I, but we like more variety than they do, so this meal allows us to eat something a little more sophisticated while not making two totally different meals. Plus, since this recipe is a crock pot meal, there's really no prep involved--huge plus!

Here's what our bags looked like totally assembled:

We really loved this meal, and we ended up eating the chicken inside tortillas like burritos, with tortilla chips like nachos, over rice like a burrito bowl, and over lettuce like a taco salad. Very versatile, very easy, and YUMMY!