Saturday, September 29, 2012

Week 4-ish Cardboard Box Airplane - Phase I

I'm almost back on track!

My Nephew is currently obsessed with airplanes, so when I saw this, I knew I had to make him one. Growing up, my Mom made the most creative Halloween costumes for us out of whatever she could find around the house. She's so creative; we were always so excited about our costumes. I can't wait until Marshall is old enough for me to make him a costume. In the mean time, making my Nephew this airplane satisfied the itch.

Here's my version of the Cardboard Box Airplane:

My airplane is smaller than the inspiration plane because my nephew is younger and I wanted him to be able to climb in and out of it without a problem. My planned next step was to paper mache it to make it stronger, but my husband talked me out of it. It would be an awful lot of work for something I'm not certain my Nephew is even going to play with. I am still planning to paint it though :)

I took a few pictures along the way so that you could see my process. I didn't measure anything, I just eye-balled it. If you have questions, let me know - but I improvised a lot and just had fun with it.

2 Cardboard boxes
Kitchen scissors
Packing Tape

Assembled Airplane:

Stay tuned for the finished product! This little guy is going to be disappointed when his cousin gets to keep the airplane instead of him!


Here's the finished, painted airplane!

I used white spray paint to paint the whole thing white. I almost had it covered in 2 coats, but I had to go back a third time in a few spots. It probably would have worked in two if it weren't so windy the day I painted it. I used my Silhouette Cameo to create and cut some vinyls to decorate the plane. The birthday boy was pretty pleased with his new plane :)

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Week 3?? - Pool Noodle Boot Savers


So, after only 2 weeks I fell off the wagon! How am I going to make it 52 weeks?! I'm the worst blogger ever. (I'm okay with that.) My excuse is that we had 2 crazy weekends that included a yard sale, and an out of town wedding. To make up for it, I'll cover weeks 3 & 4 tonight and Friday, then get back on schedule over the weekend (I hope).

Pool Noodle Boot Savers - this was one of those genius things I came across on Pinterest that made me say, "duh". For the life of me, I can't find the pin. It was in my early days of Pinterest, so it's possible I didn't even re-pin it. If anyone knows the original source, please leave a comment! Here's how mine turned out. (It's not rocket science, I promise.)

Now those are some happy boots.

I did both pairs with one noodle and it worked out perfectly. I cut it with my husband's pocket knife, which worked well - you could probably even use a steak knife.

I bought my noodle before Labor Day, so I'm not sure if you'll still be able to find them, but I bet if you do, they'll be on sale. You know - half off the $1 they already cost. 

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Regret No Re-Pin

Ahh, Pinterest. The best place to find cheese parading as poetry. Here's my knock-off.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Week 2 - Quinoa Salad

52 Weeks of Pinterest - Week 2

I've been making a lot of quinoa lately. It's so yummy and good for you. There are a lot of recipes on Pinterest for quinoa, but I've found that I can pretty much throw in whatever is left over in the fridge and it works! This weekend I made this version of a quinoa salad:

It's inspired by this Pinterest recipe by Eating for England. I changed some things though, based on what we had in the house. It still turned out delicious.

Here's my version of the recipe:
1 cup (uncooked) quinoa
1 can black beans, rinsed
1/4 cup feta cheese
1/2 red pepper, diced
1/2 red onion, diced
8ish cherry tomatoes, quartered
1 avocado, diced
1 large clove garlic, diced
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp ground cumin

There aren't any real directions to this other than to cook the quinoa per the directions on the package, and to dice everything else up while the quinoa is cooking. Once everything is ready, toss it together and enjoy!

Again, delicious! I do wish I had had the cilantro though - I think it would have been a good addition.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Week 1 - Quinoa Banana Mash & A Few Baby Food Tips

This is week one of my attempt at 52 weeks of Pinterest. I'm starting with an easy one - something I would have had to do anyway!

Today I made Baby M some baby food based on this pin; the recipe is from Weelicious via an article on iVillage. We make our own baby food, so I've kept an eye out for good recipes to try out.

When Marshall was born, I wasn't sure if we would be up for making baby food for him. It seemed like a lot of work. I decided to try it out and see, and we've been making his food ever since. If you've thought about making your own baby food, but aren't sure if you can do it, here are my thoughts about it:

  • Get. a. Magic. Bullet. If you haven't already been introduced to the awesome, life-changing appliance that is the Magic Bullet, you need to be for baby food. I was already head-over-heels with my Magic Bullet prior to having a baby; I made smoothies almost daily and Preston made hummus. For making baby food, it's a must have. What is it? It's basically a small blender. The benefits are that 1. you don't have to wash a huge blender for something small; 2. the parts go in the dishwasher; 3. you can make things right in the containers you are going to use (cups for smoothies, etc.); 4. there are multiple blending cups, so you can still keep going if something is in the dishwasher. Tip: if you make anything with seeds (smoothie with berries, etc.) be sure to rinse out the parts while it's still wet - the seeds are a pain to wash off once dried and they won't wash off in the dishwasher.
  • Prep a bunch of food at once and freeze it. Okay, so this may be obvious... but we typically make about 2 weeks worth of food at a time. This way we can do it on the weekends - and plan ahead for weekends we might be too busy to get to it. Ice cube trays are easy and cheap, but we need the food to be ready to go for daycare, so we use the OXO Freezer Storage Containers for his daycare food. Side note - our old daycare used to provide food labels and they were amazing. The new daycare does not, so I had to go hunting for them. I haven't been able to find anything like the old ones, but I did find these and they work just fine. They also dissolve in the dishwasher if we forget to remove them. I'm going to keep shopping around because $25 seems expensive - even for 250 labels (=10cents/label). If anyone has recommendations, please leave a comment!
  • Have a bunch of go-to quick foods. There will always be a time when you just didn't get around to prepping the food. Bananas are perfect for this. They're easy to keep on hand and quick to blend or even fork mash. Not to mention that most kids love them.
  • Keep a few jars of baby food on hand, just in case. So far we've always used one of our quick go-tos (bananas and avocados) to fill in when we run out of pre-prepared food, but having a few jars on hand gives me peace of mind. We have used the jars of food when we have traveled and didn't have a way to keep his food frozen.
  • I like knowing what's going into his food. 
  • It's cheaper to make your own baby food. Plus, you can purchase the ingredients from locally grown suppliers, etc. and let your $ go to supporting those folks vs. the baby food manufacturers.
  • I have control over the consistency of his food, and can progress it as he matures. As far as I know (please correct me if I'm wrong), baby food pretty much comes in one consistency. Making it myself has allowed me to do things like fork mash bananas and leave some small pieces for him to get used to chewing and swallowing.
  • Our biggest challenge has been the timing of making his food and the timing of the buying and/or the ripening of the ingredients.  Because life happens, not everything always gets made the weekend we planned on making it. Another frequent problem is that we'll purchase avocados or mangos on the weekend and they don't ripen for a couple of days. By then we're back at work and forgetting about the fruit. We try to remember to stick it in the fridge, etc., but that doesn't always happen. It always makes me sad when food ends up going to waste. The best things I've been able to do to combat this are to try to reign in my plans and try not to buy more than we can realistically make; and to buy a balance of time intensive items and easy items.

So far it has been quite reasonable to make his food. We'll see if that holds true with toddler food!

Okay, okay. On to the Quinoa Banana Mash. I made a few adjustments: first, I did not use yogurt. Since Marshall has a dairy intolerance, we haven't introduced yogurt yet. We're staying extra cautious. Instead, I mixed up a small amount of formula and added it in 1/2 tablespoon at a time to get the right consistency - which ended up being about the same as the suggested measurements for the yogurt.

I doubled up on the recipe and got about 6 oz. of food from it. Here's how it went:

End product looks great... and yes, I snuck a taste and it was delicious! We'll see what Baby M thinks of it. Stay tuned!