homemade pizza crust

Did you get a chance to take a peek at my meal planning 101 post earlier this week?  If so, you may be looking for recipes to add to next week's menu.  And I'm here to help!

Nearly 6 months ago I asked a friend if she had a tried and true homemade pizza crust recipe to share.  She handed over the best. recipe. ever.  No kidding!

It takes no time at all to whip together, needs only a couple of hours to rise, and bakes to perfection!  Read on for the tasty recipe.  And, make sure you stop back Tuesday for some creative decorating ideas!


meal planning 101

I usually love to cook dinner! Though I do have a little more time as a stay at home momma and truly do enjoy cooking, meal planning gets all the credit for my dinnertime ease! Years ago I would stare at the kitchen with no clue what to make, trips to the grocery store were frequent, and variety was lacking. Does this sound familiar? If so, read on for my most basic meal planning tips:

1) Plan and record a week long menu. Sit down with your cookbooks AND your calendar so that you can choose recipes that are appropriate for each day - maybe you have a lazy Saturday so you can prepare that time consuming meal you’ve been craving or perhaps you have a time crunched Tuesday and you need to plan a quick, simple meal.

* Don’t forget to plan all parts of the meal for each day. I like to use the rule of 3: a main dish, which may or may not include meat, plus two sides. Your sides do not have to be fancy - simply roasting or steaming fresh or frozen veggies will be tasty, healthy, and low maintenance!

2) Make the week’s grocery list as you plan your meals. If you can remember the lay-out of your grocery store write your list in the appropriate order. Hopefully this trip will be your only grocery stop all week, though you may need to make an extra trip for fresh fruits and veggies or unexpected items.

* Remember to add any additional food you may need during the week: snack items, work or school lunches, special holidays or celebrations taking place during the week, etc.

3) Post your completed menu and get the groceries. Place the menu on your fridge, a bulletin board, or wherever it is easy for you and your family to take a quick peek. Know that, on occasion, you may have to deviate from your menu and that’s OK!

To get you started, I've created some fun menu templates using picnik! To download: right click on the image and choose “copy”. Then, paste the menu into your favorite word processing program, adjust the size to your preference, print and get planning! Want to save some trees? Print 2-3 menus per page and use the back of the previous week’s menu to jot down your grocery list!

Does the task still seem a bit overwhelming? Get your feet wet by checking out a meal planning blog which offers a weekly menu for you to copy! For a list of options, do an online search using the keywords weekly meal planning blog.

Please let me know if you have any questions, a tip to share, or if you are going to give meal planning a try! And, I'll see you back here Thursday with a recipe that will quickly become one of your favorites!

P.S. I'm guest posting about the very same topic over at Going Home to Roost today!


upcycled bunny craft

Last year my littlest's preschool teacher made owls using paper towel roll cores. Since then, my girls and I have taken that idea and run with it by creating owls of our own, penguins, and now bunnies!

This craft is appropriate for many ages - my 8 and 5 year olds enjoy the project equally. While my littlest still needs some help with the smaller pieces, my oldest has fun making the project unique by adding extra embellishments!

Here's what you will need to make your own upcycled bunny:
* an empty paper towel roll (the inside cardboard part)
* scrap papers
* packing peanuts (left over from a delivery)
* thin marker or pen
* gluestick
* scissors
* ruler or tape measure
* double sided tape (optional)
* hole punch (optional - to use for the eyes and nose)

Begin by cutting a 2 inch section of the paper towel roll - this is your little bunny's body. Then, cut a 2 inch wide strip of paper long enough to wrap around the body - cover your bunny body with this strip, seal it with glue or double sided tape. Use scraps to cut the ears, whiskers, eyes, and nose - glue them on. Snip the end off of a packing peanut, stick it to the back by adding glue to the flat, cut side. Use the marker to add a mouth. And, finish up with any additional embellishments you'd like to add!

You can use your finished bunnies as decoration around the house, placecard holders at your Easter table, dyed egg holders, or napkin rings! It would also make a cute birthday party project.

I hope you have a wonderful time celebrating both Earth Day and Easter this weekend! See you back here on Tuesday with a free download!


pretty in pink

My bunny journal has, once again, found it's way into a very pretty treasury - enjoy this lovely collection!

'Pink addiction' by TsuraLi

Laces set of 3 pair...


Candy Floss-Jack Fr...


Easter Egg Punchnee...


A walk in the woods...


The Promenade Flami...


cute cat is cute ne...


Pink Valentine Orna...


Vintage BLUSH PINK ...


Anna - shoulder bag...


Modern Marie - Spri...


j is for journal - ...


Grape berry Neckla...


Obi style belt - Pi...


Dark City no.3 - SA...


A Romantic Rose - 5...


12oz cup pink pearl...


Treasury tool by Red Row Studio.

no paper paper towels [DIY]

Back in March, Bonnie, the author of one of my very favorite blogs - Going Home to Roost - did a post about eliminating paper towel use. A lovely reader, Jess, offered a suggestion for making this leap a little easier. You can check out her blog post for detailed instructions on how to make "paper" towels from old white t-shirts!

I'll be giving this DIY a try in the next week or two when the hubby replaces all of his old t-shirts, but if you get a chance to try it before I do please let me know how it goes!

And, make sure you stop back on Thursday when I'll be sharing an upcycled Easter craft inspired by Earth Day!


Earth Day party!

Before we get on our gloves and head out to pick up the ditches, the kiddos and I will be celebrating Earth Day in trashy style - inspired entirely by this trash party featured on the blog Party Perfect.

If you're planning an Earth Day celebration make sure you check out this party for oodles of ideas! I've been saving my prettiest recyclables and can't wait to get crafting! Hopefully I'll have some photos to share after the big day!

See you next week with an eco-friendly tutorial on Tuesday and an Earth Day inspired Easter craft on Thursday. You're going to love them both!

what I've been up to...

I've been filling many requests for my vintage book page banners. Each one has been so unique - ranging from a girlie baby shower to a first birthday photo session. I don't think I will ever get tired of making these!

In addition to the banners, I completed a lovely set of custom recycled notecards. For this set I handcut over 250 embellishment pieces - stretched out over several days, I enjoyed every bit of it!

And, a big *thank you* to those who have recently included oh, buckets in an Etsy treasury - check them out here, here, here, here, and here.


kid friendly Earth Day activities

We live in a tiny neighborhood on the outskirts of town. Each year, on Earth Day, my girls and I pick up trash along the road that leads to our little neighborhood.

The first year the littlest still needed a stroller and we filled only a few small bags. Last year our friends joined us. You should have seen the junk we collected - a mattress, a couple of old strollers, tires, posts, and of course regular old junk! Our city was kind enough to pick up all the trash we found and our local newspaper even gave the kiddos their 15 minutes of fame!

We'll be at it again this year - my sister in law, niece and nephew want to get in on the action and hopefully our friends will join us once again! The kids look forward to it each year and I love that they love it!

If you'd like to start your own Earth Day tradition, check out the following links packed with great ideas:

- Scholastic: Earth Day activities
- Envirolink: Earth Day guide
- KinderART: recycling project ideas

Does your family have an Earth Day tradition? Please, stop by the comments to share. And, make sure you stop back here Thursday for a super fabulous Earth Day party idea!

P.S. Thanks to hubpages for the fun Earth Day clipart!


getting to know SEWNnatural

Jane and Jen, the mother-daughter team behind SEWNnatural, create some of the most lovely eco-friendly fabric items! From dresses to burp cloths, mobiles to crib bedding - I am in love with it all! *Enjoy* browsing their shop today (you might even find something you have to have!) and I'll see you back here Tuesday to chat about Earth Day!

P.S. Did you notice the blog got a Spring make-over?!


my workspace

I love taking a peek inside other's homes: whether it's a living room re-do, a just finished nursery, or a drool worthy workspace I just can't seem to get enough!

In case you're like me, here is a tiny peek at my office space - the place where I type this blog, post listings for my shop, and craft my handmade items!

I *love* this chair! It's a good thing, since I spend several hours a day typing away from this very spot.

This dilapidated little TV tray is my workstation. I prefer to work on the floor and this little bugger, along with a twin sister, serves my needs perfectly! Seriously.

And, the final shot for today - my supply area. Here you will find all of my tools, small shipping supplies, and a filing cabinet hiding underneath. I made the tableskirt from a fabric shower curtain - a no sew project that has worked out quite well!

Thanks for coming on my miniature tour - we'll do it again sometime! See you back here Thursday with a shop you are sure to love!

drum roll please...

And the winner is...Jessica!

Terri and I will be in touch to chat about your prizes!

Thank you to all who entered the giveaway!
And, thanks again to FromTheLibraryOf!

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Timestamp: 2011-04-05 14:03:56 UTC
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