Category Archives: Home

Making Changes

I’m trying to make a few changes to our daily lives, making a concerted effort to reduce spending, simplify what I can, and live a fuller life. It’s not an easy path, but one that I think is necessary. My goal for the next twelve months is to start making small changes and track our progress, through the highs and lows, over that time. I don’t believe it’s going to be easy, but I know that it will be worth it. I shouldn’t regret that tomorrow is Monday, you know?

Short Term Food Goals

  • Begin to reduce the amount of processed foods we consume. Our refrigerator is where condiments go to die. I’m not saying I’ll be making my own mayonnaise any time soon, but I would like to reduce the amount of goods purchased out of convenience by making the better equivalent on my own.
  • Cut back on eating out. This includes trips to Sonic for Happy Hour drinks, dinners out when I’m too tired to cook, and celebrating random events as an excuse to eat out. I won’t set an arbitrary goal for this, but will track the amount we do eat out to be accountable for change.
  • Make better use of coupons.  I will not ever be a coupon maven, but I can make sure I take the ones I collect to the store instead of letting them collect dust and expire!
  • Meal planning is a must! Utilize all of those amazing printables I’ve found online, make a weekly plan and stick to it!

Short Term Household Goals

  • Reduce spending on splurge items. This is not a huge problem in our home, but I do want to reduce the amount of items I pick up on clearance. Just because it’s marked down does not mean that we NEED it in our home.
  • Switch over to mostly natural cleaning products. I know I won’t ever go completely natural, but find DIY alternatives when cleaning products run out.
  • Finish de-cluttering our bedrooms and bathrooms. The rest of the house is in pretty decent shape and I want to stop stuffing things into the bedrooms because they haven’t been organized yet!

Short Term Personal Goals

  • Make it to the gym three days a week. Start there and see where it goes.
  • Find something fun to do with my time. I volunteer. A lot. I need to return a little of my focus to myself and my family.
  • Read more, write more, crochet more. See the note above.
  • Do something once a month as a family in the community. Go the museum, a festival, or something similar that is free or very reasonably priced.

 

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I Ate Pie for Dinner (don’t tell my husband)

I woke up this morning with pie on the mind. Pie is often on my mind, to be honest. Have you ever wanted a good piece of pie after dinner?  It happens to me all. the. time. I’m not alone. My husband feels the same so I’m quite convinced there’s something in our home that makes us crave pie, like we’re haunted by the ghost of Sarah Lee or something.  Do you know how often we actually eat pie? Once every six months.  I don’t exactly keep pie making materials close at hand and places that serve pie on random weeknights are on the other side of town and talk about feeling guilty! Driving an hour for pie?? That would be the two of us.

Today I caved and made this glorious pie crust.

I did not destroy the crust!!!!!

Here’s a look from another direction. (This is making you want pie too, isn’t it??)  I have in the past made a great tasting pie crust, but one that looks completely horrid.

I’m feeling a little Martha-ish. I made the finger flutie things!

The weather is just taunting us with fall here in Texas. It will get here, but at its own pace. To help get into that fall spirit, I made a pumpkin pie. I really like that pumpkin pies do not require a pre-baked pie crust. That terrifies me. Why? I don’t know. What if it burns?!?!? Here’s a close up of the finished, non-burned pie.

Pie rules. So much better than cupcakes.

Only one of my girls love pie. If the other didn’t look so much like me, I’d be convinced she was switched at birth and my pie-loving daughter was out there somewhere dreaming of a mom who bakes her pies.

Looks Who’s Back!

Long time no see, I know. You could say I’ve been searching for a focus. Not really, but maybe. I was procrastinating on an entirely epic level. I’m back and a little bit more me.

Let’s start off today with what I’m supposed to be working on.  This is a baby blanket for a very handsome little boy born last week. I started this blanket in May. Or April. Either way, it sat in this bag for most of the summer. I’ll get to it this weekend because I’ve given myself a deadline of Tuesday morning to complete it and deliver. (I’ll let you know Tuesday if my lofty goal was reached.)

What I should be doing right now

Where we’re from

I was inspired to create this really neat map art featured on Kayla Danelle to create my own personalized version for our home. I was a little concerned about cutting out the states, but that ended up being easier than I expected. (Texas, oh Texas. You were the most difficult.)

It’s not framed yet because I’m not exactly happy with Texas being so small. Yes, I know that this is silly, but Texas is not smaller than Nevada! My husband thinks I should print out Rhode Island for this project as a joke because it’s just as large.  When my inner native Texan comes to terms with sharing equal space with other states, I’ll frame my new map art. Until then, it’s just going to sit on my computer desk with Texas on top, of course.

To end today’s post, I’m going to leave you with a little narrative of Percy, the new Sheltie puppy in our lives. I’ve started posting non-political stories on my Facebook page as a joke to counteract the political posts appearing during this lovely election season and this is one I might use in a few weeks.

Meet Percy. He likes to nap on the tile. Not that I blame him because it’s a record 104 today. In September. I hate you, Texas summers, he’s saying….. oh wait. Are you taking photos of me cuddling your flip flops?

Don’t pay attention to the cat toy I’ve claimed as my own.

He’s thinking here that if you’re going to take my photo, I need to sit up a little. Are you going to get mad at me for eating your shoes again? I promise I’m just sleeping with it.

I use this look when I’m begging. It still doesn’t get me table food.

After many photos of semi-cute poses, he finally plopped back down on the tile. He’s thinking, you don’t want to play with me. You’ve taken a ridiculous amount of photos and I give up.  I’m going to take my nap now.

You obviously forgot I need to nap for hours every day.

And Now for Something Completely Different – 2KCBWDAY5

About me through photos…

And finally…. ME (just much, much smaller)

Sewing pretty

My mother-in-law very generously gifted our household with a new sewing machine over the Christmas holidays. It’s a beautiful Janome Magnolia and I love it dearly. I made a quick cover for our newest addition as my first project of the New Year. First, I have to show off Maggie. What do you think?

Maggie

I started with a charm pack of 5 1/2″ squares, sewing the pieces together in a 3 x 5 pattern.

Sewing the squares together

I chose a coordinating fabric for the border and the back.

Sewing the border

After sewing the front and back pieces together, I attached a decorative ribbon on the side to tie the pieces together and provide a little extra touch.

Maggie's cover

A look from the side

Why Skinned Knees?

What kind of name is Skinned Knees??

I was trying to think of a cute blog title that involved my name, Tiffany. I thought of Tiffaknee, which after a few seconds was pronounced (by myself) as just rather silly. My youngest daughter, Maddie, ran up to me around that time asking for yet another band aid for a scratch on her knee. I have seriously considered buying stock in Band Aid and all other first aid companies since having children. You see, this child of mine, while she looks awfully cute and girlie, you can tell by this pose that there’s more to her than meets the eye.

Not so girlie girl

Not so girlie girl

Not long after, Maddie’s sister, Laura, asked for a band aid for a similar reason.  She is just as awfully cute and amazingly funny, but with more of a studious side than her sister.

Smiling as she counts the time to being taller than her mom.

Smiling as she counts the time to being taller than her mom.

Band aids were suddenly on the brain and somehow the next logical blog name following the not-so-hot Tiffaknee was Skinned Knees. I see a lot of them in my house because I believe that girls should grow up to feel comfortable being girlie, a complete tomboy, a geek, an intellectual, a goof, or anything and everything in between.