Category: Love & Relationships

Link Round-up: Creative Gift Wrapping, Wall Art, Sugar Cookie Bars, and More

Posted on Dec 16, 2014 by 1 Comment

Today’s link round-up has creative gift wrapping ideas, wall art, and more.

Chocolate Covered Katie shared a recipe for sugar cookie bars.

Sugar Bee Crafts taught us how to make holiday trees from cupcake liners.

Uncommon Designs Online showed us how to make peace sign wall art for Christmas.

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A Beautiful Mess showed us how to put together some creative gift wrapping.

Tried and True Blog taught us how to make a Rudolph gift card holder.

Clever Pink Pirate shared a craft to do with the kids—making cinnamon dough ornaments.

Musings from a SAHM showed us a DIY hot chocolate snowman gift.

Photo credit: Chocolate Covered Katie and A Beautiful Mess

Link Round-up: Christmas Cards, Cookies, Ornaments, and More

Posted on Dec 11, 2014 by 3 Comments

Today’s link round-up has cookies, ornaments, cards, and more.

Crafts by Amanda taught us how to make homemade button Christmas cards.

A Beautiful Mess showed us how to create dried citrus ornaments.

One Good Thing by Jillee shared a recipe for an anti-aging facial serum.

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Chocolate Covered Katie showed us how to make chocolate chip cowboy cookies.

Rad Mom Cool Kid shared some Christmas traditions.

Fitness Food Diva taught us how to make white chocolate pomegranate bark.

Crafty Journal showed us how to make a Christmas money tree.

Photo credit: Crafts by Amanda and Chocolate Covered Katie

Link Round-up: No-Sew Decor, Treats, DIY Art, and More

Posted on Dec 9, 2014 by 1 Comment

Today’s link round-up has no-sew décor, treats, art, and more.

Crafts n Coffee showed us an easy no-sew way to make a Christmas ornament from an old shirt.

Create Craft Love showed us how to make faux wood pillar candles from foam pool noodles.

The Creative Mom showed us a cute DIY pallet art project.

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A Beautiful Mess showed us how to make three different no-sew tree skirts.

Rad Mom Cool Kid shared a gift guide for the home cook.

Fitness Food Diva showed us how to make peanut butter cup blondies.

Hungry Happenings taught us how to make candy cane Rudolphs on Rice Krispies.

Photo credit: Crafts ‘n Coffee and A Beautiful Mess

Susan Boyle Has First Boyfriend at 53

Posted on Dec 3, 2014 by No Comments

Back in 2009 the world meet 47-year-old Susan Boyle on Britian’s Got Talent. Simon Cowell asked her “What’s the dream?” and she responded, “I’m trying to be a professional singer.”

There was a bit of the Cowell rolling of the eyes but all that changed by the time she sang the first phrase of “I Dreamed a Dream.” Cowell and the other judges registered surprise and delight after just the first phrase. That year she went on to win the contest and achieve her dream.

Cowell had asked her why it hadn’t worked out before then and she admitted she hadn’t had the chance. She didn’t go into the fact that in 1997 she had put her dreams on hold to care for her ailing mother. It wasn’t just her singing dream that was put on hold, but dreams of life in general.

As she approached 50, she’d never even had a boyfriend. But now that is no longer the case. Susan is now seeing an American doctor, according to Britain’s The Sun newspaper and with that news, I can’t help but think of that first song she sang on Britian’s Got Talent. One of the verses says,

Still I dream he’d come to me

And we would live the years together

But there are dreams that cannot be

And there are storms we cannot weather

She reached her dream of becoming a professional singer and is known globally. But she’d never known a romantic relationship, and even eluded to the fact that she had never been kissed.

Now at 53, she has entered into the first stages of her first romantic relationship and I am happy to see it. The two met recently while she was on a six-week promotional tour here in the U.S.

Boyle has chosen not to reveal the doctor’s name because it wouldn’t be fair to him, but she did say he is a doctor from Connecticut, and that he was a “perfect gentleman.” They enjoyed a romantic lunch together, and the two have plans for him to visit her at her home in Scotland.

Not that this guy might be THE guy, but you never know. It’s always nice to see dreams come true, especially to someone who sacrificed so much.

Photo credits: Amazon

Link Round-up: Paper Bag Pirate Puppet, Stencils, Pie Parfait Shots, and More

Posted on Dec 2, 2014 by No Comments

Today’s link round-up has a paper bag pirate puppet, stencils for cakes and beverages, pie parfait shots, and more.

Homemade Interest taught us how to make easy pie parfait shots.

A Beautiful Mess taught us how to stencil cute designs on cakes and beverages.

Mind Body Green offered some tips for going on a digital detox.

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Crafts by Amanda showed us how to make a paper bag pirate puppet.

Homemaking Hacks shared time saving tips for appetizers.

A Mom’s Take shared the essentials for your next road trip.

The DIY Dreamer taught us how to make a beaded wrap bracelet with the kids.

Photo credit: Homemade Interest and Crafts by Amanda

Who Has Diaper Duty at Your House?

Posted on Dec 1, 2014 by 1 Comment

When my daughter was born, I had never changed a diaper. I was scared I’d do it wrong (not sure how you can really mess that up too much in hindsight), but my husband jumped right in and handled quite a few of them during those first few nights at the hospital.

I was lucky. Even after that, he was willing to split diaper duty as much down the middle as possible considering I work from home and had her there with me during the day and he worked away from home and sometimes had a monstrous commute.

I’ve heard some women complain that their husbands never take the initiative to get up and change a diaper. Some claim their husbands have never changed one, at all.

Do you think that it’s fair for diaper duty to fall almost 100 percent to one parent if they work from home so they can take care of their child while they work, or if they’re a traditional stay at home mom (or dad)?

Or does that stay at home parent deserve to have their own version of 5:00 (quittin’ time!), even if it’s only a temporary break when their spouse gets home? I think they do, whether they have an extra job or not.

I’m reminded of that old saying, “A mother’s work never ends.” I think it should, even if it’s only a brief respite for a long bath or a shower that lasts more than 30 seconds and includes shampoo and conditioner.

Who has or had diaper duty at your house? Did you split it evenly? How did you work out which person did what for the kids, and when? Did you end up doing all the diaper changes? Were you fine with it or did you resent it?

Photo credit: Inga Munsinger Cotton

Identical Twins Face Breast Cancer Together

Posted on Nov 28, 2014 by No Comments

Identical twins share a special relationship. They start with everything in common, but 34 year old identical twins, Kelly McCarthy and Kristen Mauer, have shared in an unique way.

When Kelly learned she had breast cancer she urged her sister to get checked out. They were diagnosed with breast cancer just months apart around the beginning of last year. Kristen said, “Kelly was more upset than I was during my diagnosis, and likewise, when she was diagnosed I was a mess.”

Identical twins make the perfect donor for each other because their skin, tissue and organs are a perfect match genetically. Each twin underwent surgery.

Breast reconstruction usually involves implants and/or the woman’s own tissue. In Kelly McCarthy’s case she didn’t have enough tissue because radiation treatment had damaged the tissue near her breasts. Her sister stepped up and offered to be a donor. Kelly said that her sister’s sacrifice “is humbling.”

The twins surgeon says it isn’t unusual for identical twins to both get breast cancer because they have the same genetic makeup. He said, “With twins, there’s also often a “mirroring effect,” with breast cancer developing in the opposite breast. That’s what happened with McCarthy and Maurer.”

Breast reconstruction between identical twins is still rare. It’s only been done a few times, and Kristen and Kelly,who is a nurse, are among the youngest patients to undergo the procedure.

Kristen underwent a double mastectomy, which was recommended due to the aggressive nature of her sister’s cancer. She had reconstruction with implants after the birth of her second child last March.

Kelly underwent a second mastectomy more recently along with the reconstruction of both breasts. However her reconstruction used some of her own tissue to fashion one breast, and her sister’s tissue to reconstruct the second breast.

The twins have always been very close, and this experience has brought them even closer. Kelly admits, “I feel closer. Her tissue is over my heart.”

Photo credits: pfala

Link Round-up: Collections, Christmas Ornaments, Salt and Sugar Scrubs, and More

Posted on Nov 20, 2014 by No Comments

Today’s link round-up has organization tips for kids’ collections, Christmas ornament ideas for kids, a natural salt and sugar scrub, and more.

A Beautiful Mess showed us some cute ideas for using rainbow ink.

Kids’ Activities Blog shared some tips for keeping kids’ collections under control.

How Does She shared 21 Christmas ornaments kids can make.

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Crafts by Amanda showed us how to turn stenciled CDs and DVDs into coasters.

Olivia Cleans Green taught us how to make natural salt and sugar scrubs.

Pizzazzerie showed us how to set colorful kids’ Thanksgiving table.

Painted Home Designs showed us how to turn a dresser into an island.

Photo credit: A Beautiful Mess and Crafts by Amanda

Mom Turns to Facebook to Address Nasty Anonymous Note

Posted on Nov 14, 2014 by 1 Comment

When I was growing up, we knew our neighbors. We were in one another’s homes, our parents got together socially. We didn’t just recognize each other; we all knew one another.

It was still that way when my children were young, but gradually people moved away from real relationships and we fell into a wave-at-one-another kind of friendliness.

I recently had a note placed on my car for parking on the easement across from the house I was visiting. The property was a wooded ravine but offered enough off-the shoulder space to park.

The note told me not to park there because it was hard enough to get the grass to grow. I looked around wondering who would have put it there. No clue, but I didn’t park there again.

My story is nothing compared to the young 26-year-old mom who arrived home to find an anonymous note in her mailbox that actually accused her of being a negligent parent. It read:

“You may be able to ignore your baby crying but we are tired of listening to him crying non-stop all day.”

The mom, Trish LaForty, admits that the note left her feeling “shocked and emotional.” She and her family live in an apartment complex, and hadn’t had any problem with any of their neighbors.

Like me, she had no idea who had written the note, so she went to the community’s Facebook page and posted this message:

To whoever wrote this note: thanks. Like being a parent isn’t tough enough… You didn’t even have the guts to come knock on our door.

FYI Our baby doesn’t cry ‘all day’, he cries when he doesn’t want do go to sleep, when he’s getting his nappy changed and when I say ‘no’ because I refuse to let him be spoiled and run around like he owns the joint.

If you’d like to chat more, feel free to pop in. You obviously know where we live.

To her surprise the post garnered overwhelming responses that were supportive and positive. So she decided to do things the old-fashioned way. She visited her closest neighbors to clear up any misunderstandings and to see if any of them had received similar notes.

It turned out her neighbors were as surprised about the note as she was. No one had any idea who had written it.

LaForty said, “I think it’s sad that there are still people out there who lack the true feel of what a community should be.” Perhaps her visits to her neighbors can rekindle some of that, or at the least put a stop to any more of nasty anonymous note deliveries.

Photo credits: SunriseOn7