Tuesday, August 31, 2010

My favorite Etsy stores

With Christmas shopping in the early phases around here I've been window shopping on Etsy lately.  Here is a link to my favorites page, well it's actually 6 pages ;)



Who are some of your favorite Etsy artisans?  Do you have a certain artisan you buy from time and time again?

Monday, August 30, 2010

So Funny!

Yesterday The Hubbs went grocery shopping with us.  Kinda weird, but very nice indeed.  I usually go on Monday mornings, but he said we should all go together.  As I was zooming around the aisles while he had the kids in the cart, he randomly picked up a can of bread crumbs.  I stood there waiting to hear why he picked them up and then he said "What the heck.  Look at ALL these ingredients in the BREAD CRUMBS.  Aren't they supposed to be just bread crumbs?  It even has hydrogenated oil in it." 

I seriously love that guy and he makes me laugh all the time :)

*the can had about 30 ingredients in it*

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Christmas ideas

*A helmet should be worn while using these bikes*
I first saw a balance bike a few months ago at a garage sale.  It wasn't for sale, but was being used by a 3 yr old to ride around.  It looked so cool, yet so easy.  The boy was having a blast and had a lot of control while using it.  So, this year we're looking to buy one for each kiddo for Christmas.  There are no used ones to be had on Craigslist or eBay right now, but I will be watching both closely.

Another option would be for my hubby to modify the current toddler two-wheeler we have to make it a balance bike and buying a second one at thrift store and doing the same.  

Have you heard of these bikes?  Do you own one?  If so, what do you like/dislike about it?

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Friday, August 27, 2010

Homemade disinfecting wipes

I ran across this article and thought some of you would like to read about it.  I'll certainly be doing this :)


Thursday, August 26, 2010


Let me start off by saying I'm excited!  See, around here naturally living is finally getting off the ground and becoming a bit more popular.  If you're a local reader than you're likely aware of the store Huckleberrys and probably love it.  If you don't love it, than I'm sorry, because I really freaking love it.

Saturday the 18th, Huckleberrys is having their bi-annual Natural Living Sale and all non-food items are 35% OFF.  This is a screaming deal.  I've already pre-ordered (you have to pre-order before Sept. 1st) a gallon of Dr. Bronner's Almond 18-in-1 liquid soap and a gallon of Giovanni Shampoo.  Here is the rest of my list and if you're wondering, yes I already made it into an Excel spreadsheet with AutoSum at the bottom.  I may or may not reveal the total to you.  The Hubbs will be "editing" it later tonite after he chokes a little at the number ;)

Giovanni Sunset Styling Lotion
Dr. Bronners Almond
Giovanni Shampoo
Country Save
Bac-Out drain
Maid Naturally abrasive scrub
7th Gen disinfecting wipes x2
Child's cough
Chewy vitamins
Foaming soap x3
Burts Bees lip balmx5
Sea Fresh toothpaste x3
Mouthwash x2
Deodorant x3
Pest control spray

Do you stock up on sale like these?

What is your favorite "natural" care item?

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Creativity abounds

I came across this book last week and surprisingly our library had it.  So, I reserved it and picked it up yesterday.  WOWza is it awesome.  It's going to be awesome for gift giving this year.  So, if you're a personal friend, you'll likely be getting some body/facial care items for Christmas *wink wink*

I've made simple milk baths, soothing soaks, and body scrubs in the past, but this opened my eyes to the many possibilities of toners, cleansers, massage oils, and lots of etc.

On to cooking, or whatever you'd call this...

Watermelon Sorbet
My dad goes to Hermiston, OR a lot for work.  He picked us up 2 LARGE seeded watermelons and they are delish.  Seeded watermelons are the bees knees if you ask anyone in our family :)  So, now that we're all a little full of watermelon I'm going to make some sorbet.

I've adapted this recipe from here


  • 3 cups water
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 cup lime juice
  • 5 cups cubed, seeded watermelon


  1. Heat water and sugar in a saucepan over medium-high heat until sugar has dissolved, stirring occasionally. Allow to cool. Place watermelon in a blender or food processor. Blend until smooth. Whisk watermelon, lime juice and syrup together in a large bowl. Cover and chill in the refrigerator.
  2. Pour the chilled mixture into an ice cream maker and freeze according to manufacturer's directions until it reaches "soft-serve" consistency. Transfer sorbet to a one- or two-quart lidded plastic container; cover surface with plastic wrap and seal. For best results, sorbet should ripen in the freezer for at least 2 hours or overnight.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

This week's wrap up

Last Saturday we got a call from my BIL at 10:15pm.  He had quite a bit of joy in his voice when we answered and he said there was a wooden playground across the street in a free pile.  He was calling to make sure we wanted it and of course we did.  He said he was going to back up his truck and push it in and we'd deal with it in the AM.  That morning we went and picked 5 gallons of plums while the men strapped it in the back of the truck.  It's awesome!  I've put a twin sheet across the top for some shade and it fits perfect.  The men nailed, screwed, and tightened everything down while the kidlets were chomping at the bit to get up there.

Today we headed to Famous Footwear to get the kids some fall shoes.  They didn't have anything we really wanted so we wandered around a bit window shopping in our favorite stores for upcoming Christmas and birthday ideas.  I've already started our Excel spreadsheet for gift giving and I'd be happy to share it with you, just send me an email at fvcwft at gmail dot com.  We headed over to Sears because The Hubbs wanted to drool over a tool or something.  Before we left, I suggested we look at the Sears' kids shoes.  We ended up walking out of there for $67 + tax for 4 pairs of shoes.  WOOT!

Top left: New Balance tennis shoes (6w) for Little Mister = $28
Top right: New Balance tennis shoes (10w) for Little Miss = $12 *clearance*
Bottom left: Fila (look-a-like Keens) for next summer (6, they run BIG) for Little Mister = $12 *clearance*
Bottom right: New Balance tennis shoes (8w, for next year) for Little Mister = $15 *clearance*

Little Miss also has her New Balance water tennis shoes and she'll wear those until she outgrows them.  I also hit up the See Kai Run 1/2 off sale a month or two ago.  I got Little Mister 2 pairs and Little Miss 1 pair.  All we have left to buy are snow boots, but we don't plan to do that for at least 2 months.

Have you ever scored something from a free or garbage pile?  What brand(s) of shoes do you like to buy for your kids?

Thursday, August 19, 2010

1950's baking

I posted this on my personal, private blog, but thought some of you may be interested in it too :)

Yesterday I headed to Costco to grab $100 worth of groceries...icheewawa.  Anyways, I went down the baking aisle and saw a big box of 1950's Devil's Food Cake mix (with a frosting packet too).  For the life of me I can't remember the brand, but I didn't buy it because we don't have room for such a large box in the kitchen right now.  The reason I'm posting about this is because it didn't contain any high fructose corn syrup, corn syrup, or hydrogenated/partially hydrogenated oils (aka trans fats).  If you look below, the first picture is for Betty Crockers Devil's Food Cake mix which contains many of the ingredients that are bad for you.

This next picture is for Betty Crocker's Dark Chocolate frosting which also contains many of those same ingredients.

I'm an avid label reader, and not just the nutrition facts, but more importantly the ingredients.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Patagonia Capilene for $.97

For those of you who are familiar with the Patagonia brand name, then you're probably wondering what I got for $.97.  Maybe some socks, maybe a hat or something.

Well, I got a 2-piece men's XL Capilene (their base layer line).  It's navy blue fleece and the top is a long sleeve henley and the pants remind me of thermals (you wear under your pants).  These will be for The Hubbs, unless they don't fit.

I was looking for a stock pot at The Army this morning and may have accidentally scooted over to the 75% OFF rack, whoops!  I was just browsing and came upon this gold mine and then saw it was an XL.  WoOt!  I am so stoked!  The Hubbs' long underwear (thermals) have been looking tired the last 2 years, so these will be perfect :)

The top retails for $59 and the pants retail for $49!

*My camera is in the car, with a dead battery, so these are examples*

Saturday, August 14, 2010

I got me something special

I'm way to excited about the household gadget I got today from Craigslist.  It's round, gets hot and makes something delish!  Can you guess what it is?  I bet you're thinking crockpot, but you'd be wrong (more on that later).

I scored a brand new Waring Pro YM350 Professional Yogurt Maker for $35!  It retails online for about $70.  It rates at 4.5 stars on Amazon so that's a plus.  I opened it when I got home to find it came with plastic jars, I was super bummed.  Then I looked in the sink and saw 2 small canning jars (glass) and it struck me, I could just replace all the plastic with my glass, but only if the lids fit!  And guess what...they do!  I'm so happy right now!  I'm going to read the instructions in a little bit, but I plan to have fresh yogurt in the AM for enjoying on our homemade pancakes :)  Happy Sunday morning to us!

It makes 48oz of fresh yogurt which will likely take us 2 weeks to eat.  I'm guessing though, that my family will ask me to make them some too, which I will be happy to oblige :)  I'll keep you all updated on how it works.

Some of you may be wondering why I don't just make it in my crockpot and I've tried.  I tried it about 2 months ago and used an entire gallon of our milk to try.  Yeah, I'm a dork that way.  I wouldn't want to try a small batch...noooooo.  O well, it didn't work.  My crockpot stayed too hot and it never made it to yogurt.

As for my kitchen being crockpot-less for a month now, I finally replaced it, temporarily.  I bought a standard sized one at Thrifty Living this week for $7.  My old one was a huge 5-quart and I LOVED it.  I could make a ton of beans, a HUGE roast, etc etc.  This one is probably 3 quarts and will do for now.  I'll be keeping my eye out for a larger one or I may decide to replace my original stoneware down the road, we'll see.

*No pictures today, sorry.  Blogger doesn't want to upload any.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Monday's thrifting finds

I went looking for a crockpot because my brand new one already broke.  Well, the stoneware broke.  So, I've been crockpotless for 3 weeks now and am really feeling the effects.  Anywho, I didn't find one, but I did find all of this for under $22!

The outfits on the far left are going to be a gift for a friend who just had a baby boy. I'm also going to send her the HA sleeper I got a while ago (if I can still find it) $.98 for both

The red pants are Silva (or something) $.89 and the Gap overalls for A were $.45. 4 pairs of leggings for A $1.89/all. 2 shirts and a romper $1.45/all

A Landsend lightweight fleece pullover for me, $1.45.
Striped tank for me, $1.99
Ruby red flowy skirt $2.29
My library discard finds totaled $9/all. These will be wonderful additions to our home school library down the road :)
What have you found at the thrift stores or garage sales lately?

Another free $10

I seriously can't believe this.  I just got another $10 Kohl's gift card in the mail.  I'm shaking my head in disbelief and thanking God for blessing us with these.  So far this year I've received $40 free from them.  I have never given my information to them when they ask for my zip code or phone number when I make purchases.  I have no idea what I'm going to buy with it yet, but I'll be sure to post here with what I got for free :)

*This picture is of the first card I got this year.  I didn't feel like taking a picture of the one I just got ;)

Sunday, August 8, 2010

I need some wedding gift ideas

Please help me everyone :)

We are attending a wedding of a dear friend of mine in 2 weeks.  I can't hardly wait to see her finally tie the knot!

They have been together for a few years and have all of the stuff they need, but of course are registering for things they want.  Who can blame them?  Anywho, their Target gift registry is full of items for the kitchen and bedroom (linens).  Do I dare buy them a used KitchenAid food processor?  Or a set of used Pyrex dishes?  They aren't necessarily frugal or into the whole "buy used" movement.  I don't want to insult them with my used gifts, but I won't be buying anything new either. 

So here's where you guys come in.  I'm open to nearly anything :)

Friday, August 6, 2010

I'm around...just not here really

I went out of town last week and I've not been very active inside the house lately.  The weather around here is hot and we're enjoying the outdoors while they last.  Here's hoping for an Indian Summer :)

Anywho, the only thrift shopping we've done was today when we picked up 2 board games for a family member's birthday present.  The grand total with tax was $.97!  WOOT!  Can't beat that :)

Have a nice weekend everyone...I'll be back next week

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

World Breastfeeding Week

It's World Breastfeeding Week! I'll be celebrating by whipping them out all.week.long :D